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Hilary Benn: The Province benefits from DFID's support to national Health and Education programmes. This assistance is substantial, including £20 million to the Education Ministry (200307) and £20 million to the Health Ministry (200105). DFID is ensuring access to quality services in every province through to the district and community levels.
Targeted assistance to Eastern Province includes sexual and reproductive health programmes. For example, DFID is currently funding a £20,000 information campaign on reproductive health and HIV/AIDs mainly targeted at young people.
In the coming year, the UK Small Grants Scheme will focus on Eastern Province. With a budget of £160,000, the Scheme will support proposals working with vulnerable groups including women, orphans and children. Priority will be given to activities that will promote HIV/AIDs prevention and coping activities.
Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions the Government have had with African countries to strengthen protection of individuals who seek asylum from key refugee-producing regions; and what the outcome of these discussions was. 
Mr. Rammell: The UK Government have an obligation under the 1951 refugee convention to protect those with "a well founded fear of persecution". We continue to work with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and in bilateral discussions with African countries to strengthen the protection of individuals who come from regions with particularly high refugee caseloads. Our objective is to draw on the full-range of protection tools where appropriate, including resettlement, assisting African countries with immigration service training, and effectively incorporating refugee aspects into development assistance programmes.
Mr. Mike O'Brien:
The Government have a long standing policy to discourage trade with, or investment in, Burma. We offer no support to companies wishing to
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trade with Burma or for those who want to invest there. We welcomed the announcement by British American Tobacco, the largest remaining UK investor in Burma, that it is withdrawing its investment from that country in response to my request of 2 July 2003. British companies who enquire about trade with Burma are informed of the grave political situation, the regime's atrocious record on human rights and the country's dire economic prospects. As my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister said in the House on 25 June 2003, Official Report, column 1042, "trade with Burma is not appropriate when the regime continues to suppress the basic human rights of its people".
In practical terms, the regime's economic mismanagement and the attitude of the international community means there is virtually no new inward investment into Burma and established companies are pulling out.
Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Government do not encourage tourism to, or investment in, Burma. As my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister said in the House on 25 June 2003, Official Report, column 1042, "trade with Burma is not appropriate when the regime continues to suppress the basic human rights of its people." Orient Express is aware of our views.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment his Department has made of the accessibility for humanitarian groups of the more remote areas of Colombia; what discussions he has had on this with his Colombian counterpart; what assurances (a) he has requested and (b) he has received with regard to the Colombian Government's efforts to facilitate access to all parts of Colombia; and if he will make a statement. 
There are currently no legal restrictions in place in Colombia preventing access to any part of their country for international organisations and their agencies or for Colombian or foreign NGOs working there. However, the continuing armed conflict and the country's geography mean that access to the remotest parts of the country can be difficult. In addition paramilitary or guerrilla groups do attempt to block access by outsiders to some parts of the country, particularly remote rural locations. International organisations and NGOs are also conscious of the potential risk to their staff of attempting to gain access to areas in which the armed conflict is ongoing. Through its democratic security policy the Government of Colombia is trying to bring security and accessibility to all regions in the country. We constantly urge the Colombian Government to ensure that the implementation of this policy is in accordance with international law. We also monitor developments closely to inform our own travel advice.
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Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his assessment is of the timetable for the introduction of monitors for the purpose of peace-keeping in Darfur. 
Mr. Mullin: We welcome the readiness with which the African Union (AU) volunteered to take on the leadership of the monitoring mission in Darfur. The AU have already begun deployment of the monitors and expect this to be completed by the end of next month. This compares favourably with the time taken to deploy previous monitoring missions in Sudan.
Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been received from the US concerning the de-population of the civilian population of Diego Garcia and the Chagos Islands that lie within the British Indian Ocean Territories. 
Mr. Rammell: The US authorities have in the past made clear their concerns about the presence of a settled civilian population in the British Indian Ocean Territory. However, I have received no recent representations from them on the subject.
Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what facilities exist on Diego Garcia for holding human beings against their will; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Straw: In exercise of powers conferred on him by the Prisons Ordinance 1981 of the British Indian Ocean Territory, the Commissioner for the Territory has declared certain specified premises in Diego Garcia to be a prison. This was done by orders made in February 1986 (which replaced an earlier order made in July 1982), July 1993 and December 2001. Under various provisions of the law of the Territory, persons may be arrested in execution of a warrant of arrest issued by a Court or a Magistrate, or in certain circumstances without such a warrant, and any person so arrested may then be detained in such a prison until he is brought before a Court or a Magistrate. Persons who are ordered by a Court or a Magistrate to be remanded in custody or committed to prison are detained in such a prison as also, of course, are persons who are sentenced by a Court to imprisonment following their conviction of a criminal offence.
Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many detainees, and how many shipments of detainees, have passed through Diego Garcia, or the territorial waters off it, while in transit between other destinations; whether any detainees have been disembarked at Diego Garcia, and for how long; and if he will make a statement. 
The United States authorities have repeatedly assured us that no detainees have at any time passed in transit through Diego Garcia or its territorial waters or have disembarked there and that the allegations to that effect are totally without foundation. The Government are satisfied that their assurances are correct.
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