Occupied Territories

Mr Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much of Area C of the Occupied Palestinian Territory is covered by approved masterplans. [201985]

Mr Duncan: Palestinian masterplans developed by the International Peace and Cooperation Centre (IPCC) cover approximately 0.4% of Area C. To date, only two of these have been approved.

Palestinians

Mr Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many of the masterplans funded by her Department in Area C of the Occupied Palestinian Territory have received full approval by the Israeli government; and how long the approval process took in each case. [201984]

Mr Duncan: Only two of the 32 UK-funded masterplans have received full approval so far. The process to gain approval took approximately 27 months for each. We are urging the Government of Israel to accelerate the approval of the other plans in order to allow the development of Palestinian communities in Area C without the risk of demolition.

Mr Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development when the construction of the first infrastructure project funded by her Department in Area C of the Occupied Palestinian Territory will commence. [201986]

Mr Duncan: DFID and our partners are currently engaging with the Israeli authorities in order to accelerate the approval of UK-funded masterplans for Palestinian communities in Area C. These Palestinian plans provide the basis for sustainable development in Area C and

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reduce the risk of demolition. We continue to consider the full range of measures to continue our support for Palestinians in Area C.

Mr Ward: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment her Department has made of the adequacy of the level of food, fuel and medical supplies entering Gaza each day. [202616]

Mr Duncan: Israeli movement and access restrictions, exacerbated by the closure of illegal smuggling tunnels between Gaza and Egypt, have led to serious shortages of fuel and medical supplies and have driven up the price of food. 71% of households in Gaza are either food insecure or vulnerable to food insecurity. The World Health Organisation estimates that 29% of drugs are at zero stock (less than one month’s supply). Due to severe shortages of fuel, Gaza’s power plant operates at half its capacity, triggering power outages of up to 12 hours per day and sometimes shutting down completely.

Performance Appraisal

Mrs Lewell-Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what proportion of (a) disabled and (b) all other staff employed by her Department received each level of performance rating in their end of year performance assessment for 2013-14. [202060]

Mr Duncan: The information is as follows:

Percentage
RatingStaff with a disabilityStaff without a disabilityStaff who have not declared if they have a disability or not

Box one

19

26

29

Box two

72

67

65

Box three

9

7

6

West Africa

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assistance her Department is offering countries in West Africa affected by the ebola virus to remedy the situation. [202478]

Lynne Featherstone: The UK Government has contributed £683,601 to the Ebola Virus Disease in the West African Region. Through the UK’s global multilateral contributions we are supporting a regional containment strategy and in addition, strengthening the outbreak response in Sierra Leone and Liberia through bilateral assistance.

In Sierra Leone, DFID funds will be used to support improved coordination at the national level; training and equipping of health workers to competently manage Ebola cases; improved EVD case detection and supporting appropriate radio messaging and community mobilisation activities on EVD prevention and control in affected districts. In Liberia, DFID has provided chlorine and other materials for hygiene and sanitising; and training in their appropriate use. DFID programmes are ready to respond to further requests from implementing partners

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as appropriate. We are closely monitoring the outbreak from Sierra Leone and Liberia and internationally through DFID headquarters. We are working with WHO and national government agencies to improve our understanding of the outbreak and help to guide the response in-country and regionally.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Armed Conflict: Sexual Offences

Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what estimate he has made of public footfall at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict. [202518]

Mark Simmonds: One of the principal aims of the Global Summit was to invite members of the public to take part in the summit and to transform awareness of a taboo and often poorly understood subject. We estimate that several thousand members of the public attended the fringe events each day.

Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many fringe events were held during the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict; and if he will make a statement. [202519]

Mark Simmonds: I refer my hon. Friend to the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague)’s statement to the House on 16 June 2014 on the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict. There were 175 fringe events during the summit, which included panel discussions and debates, theatre and performance, marketplace with products made by survivors, gallery, silent cinema, exhibitions. We estimate that several thousand members of the public attended the fringe each day. In addition, our embassies and high commissions overseas held a global fringe and hosted events for each of the 84 hours of the summit. These events challenged perceptions and encouraged policy and decision makers and the general public to engage with a subject that for too long has remained hidden.

Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many (a) Government Ministers, (b) non-governmental organisations and civil society groups and (c) survivors attended the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict; and if he will make a statement. [202524]

Mark Simmonds: I refer my right hon. Friend the to the statement made by the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs to this House on 16 June 2014 on the outcomes of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict. 79 Ministers and 129 country delegations were accredited for Summit, plus 950 experts from civil society, non-governmental organisations, academia, health practitioners, military and policy. Many more members of the public attended the Fringe. The FCO supported participation of the 300 grass roots and civil society activists from conflict affected countries, many of whom had direct experience of sexual violence in conflict. Other organisations who attended also had

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survivors as part of their delegations. Together we discussed practical action to tackle impunity for the use of sexual violence as a tactic of conflict and continued the long process of changing global attitudes to these crimes.

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his future plans are for the level of staff and budget resourcing on his Department’s Ending Sexual Violence Initiative. [202714]

Mark Simmonds: The Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) Team has been in place since the launch of the initiative in 2012. The team is now developing the next phase of the PSVI strategy building on the success of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, co-hosted by the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague) and the Special Envoy of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees from 10 to 13 June 2014. That work includes assessing the necessary future staff and budget requirements to achieve the post-summit objectives.

Colombia

Robert Flello: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make representations to his Colombian counterpart seeking clarification of the actions being taken by the Colombian Government to ensure the safety of land restitution claimants in that country. [202585]

Mr Swire: During my recent visit to Colombia from 25 to 27 June 2014, I met two Deputy Ministers for Foreign Affairs and heads of the Colombian Government’s major human rights agencies. This included the National Protection Unit: the Government body that coordinates the protection of at risk groups and individuals in Colombia. I set out HM Government concern about the reported rise in attacks against human rights defenders and cases of impunity for those responsible.

While in Bogotá, I also met representatives from six human rights organisations, including Oxfam and Christian Aid as well as Colombian non-governmental organisations (NGOs.)

Robert Flello: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will take steps to consult with interested hon. Members before the next Ministerial visit to Colombia. [202607]

Mr Swire: On 19 June 2014, I held a round table with Peace Brigades International UK, Justice Colombia and AB Colombia to discuss a range of issues prior to my visit to Colombia (25-27 June). The invitation was also extended to members of the Parliamentary Friends of Colombia and the All Party Parliamentary Group. Foreign and Commonwealth Office officials also met Martha Diaz Suarez, Director of AFUSADO (an organisation for family members of victims of extra-judicial killings), who was unable to attend the round table.

Conflict Resolution: Females

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to his Department's National Action Plan on Women, Peace

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and Security 2014-2017, in what way, as part of the implementation of that plan, women's participation at grassroots level will be measured. [202388]

Mark Simmonds: The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), along with the Secretaries of State for International Development and Defence, launched the 2014-2017 National Action Plan (NAP) at the Ending Sexual Violence in Conflict Summit earlier this month.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office, working with Department for International Development and Ministry of Defence, is committed to ensure that the promotion of women’s participation in conflict resolution is an integral part of our overseas conflict policy and forms one of the main focuses of the NAP. The NAP outlines several ways we will do this, for example providing financial and capacity building support to civil society organisations promoting women and girls’ participation in peacebuilding.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has also funded and helped to facilitate workshops in two of the NAP’s focus countries (Afghanistan and Burma) with another being held in a third (Somalia) in the next few months. The workshops have been well attended by civil society groups that, in many cases, represent the views of women from the grassroots level.

Measuring participation of women from grassroots level is challenging; there is a lack of baseline and country-level data on women in peace and security issues. With this in mind, the UK has allocated specific funding to the external and independent monitoring and evaluation of this NAP.

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the predicted cost of the implementation of the National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security is in each of the next three years. [202440]

Mark Simmonds: The National Action Plan (NAP) on Women, Peace and Security was launched at the Ending Sexual Violence in Conflict Summit and builds on lessons to date, and address some of the challenges in the previous NAP. The NAP's Implementation Plan will be launched later this year. In line with our UN commitments on women, peace and security we will continue to address violence against women and support women’s role in building peace and promote their participation, with a particular focus on Afghanistan, Burma, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Libya, Somalia and Syria.

The aims of the NAP and Implementation Plan are to ensure a more coherent and effective approach to the work on Women, Peace and Security. They provide the frameworks for activities which are funded through existing departmental budgets. Those budgets include: the Conflict Pool (the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund from 2015-16), the Human Rights and Democracy Fund, the Arab Partnership Fund and Official Development Assistance-all of which help to fund the work on women, peace and security across the world.

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what resources his Department plans to commit to the Implementation Plan for the UK's National Action Plan on United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325. [202774]

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Mark Simmonds: The National Action Plan (NAP) articulates our priorities on women, peace and security and is a tool to coordinate implementation of our work at the national level. It serves as a guiding policy document that is able to capture the diverse set of initiatives on this agenda taking place across our security, foreign policy and development work. The NAP’s Implementation Plan, which will be launched later this year, will be used to assess the impact of UK efforts on women, peace and security throughout the life of the NAP.

The NAP and the Implementation Plan, which will be launched later this year, provide the framework for activities which are funded through existing departmental budgets, including: the Conflict Pool (the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund from 2015-16), the Human Rights and Democracy Fund, the Arab Partnership Fund and Official Development Assistance—all of which help to fund the work on women, peace and security across the world. We will also allocate funding for external and independent monitoring and evaluation of the NAP.

Egypt

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he plans to make to his Egyptian counterpart on press freedom in that country. [202477]

Hugh Robertson: The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), made a statement on 23 June expressing his concerns and urging the Egyptian Government to demonstrate its commitment to freedom of expression by reviewing this case as a matter of urgency.

The Egyptian ambassador Ashraf el-Kholy was summoned to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) on 23 June. FCO Political Director, Simon Gass told the Egyptian ambassador that the British Government was deeply concerned by the verdicts, along with the procedural shortcomings seen during the trials. The British ambassador to Egypt raised this issue in Cairo with the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 24 June.

British Ministers and diplomats will continue to urge the Egyptian Government to demonstrate its commitment to freedom of expression.

Israel

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to the briefing notes issued by the spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights dated 20 June 2014, on the legislative amendment before the Israeli Knesset relating to force-feeding and medical treatment of prisoners on hunger strike, what steps he is taking to ensure that international human rights and international humanitarian law human rights are upheld by all parties. [202068]

Hugh Robertson: Officials from our embassy in Tel Aviv met with an official from the Israeli Prime Minister’s office on 17 June and expressed our concern over the Bill. We are continuing to monitor developments.

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Mr Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to the answer of 6 May 2014, Official Report, column 73W, on Israel, how many complaints about differential treatment of British nationals have been made since 2010 by the UK embassy in Tel Aviv to the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and on which dates. [202128]

Hugh Robertson: Officials from our embassy in Tel Aviv have formally raised with the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) mistreatment of British nationals three times since 2010. They were on 7 January 2012; 19 December 2012 and 18 March 2013. Our officials have to seek permission from the individual concerned before raising with the MFA, and not all individuals are willing to pursue this route.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is unable to interfere in the immigration policies or procedures of another country, but does raise cases of grave concern with the MFA.

Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his policy is on sanctions against Israel; and what assessment he has made of the compliance of that policy with international law and relevant UN resolutions. [202145]

Hugh Robertson: We have been clear that we oppose sanctions and boycotts on Israel, and do not believe such steps would promote progress towards a two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We are satisfied that this position is consistent with our international obligations.

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information his Department holds on how many of the recommendations made by UNICEF in its March 2013 report on children in Israeli military detention have been implemented by the government of Israeli; and what discussions he has had with his counterpart in Israel on the recommendations in that report that are yet to be implemented. [202234]

Hugh Robertson: The Government has made no assessment on how many recommendations made by UNICEF have been taken forward by the Israeli authorities. However, we continue to urge the Israeli authorities to take action on the recommendations made in the UNICEF report, and the positive steps they have taken so far, and the earlier independent report by senior British lawyers. I wrote to the Israeli Attorney-General on this issue on 31 March 2014.

Kenya

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the threat level for UK visitors to Kenya. [202479]

Mark Simmonds: There is a high threat from terrorism, including kidnapping, in Kenya. The main threat comes from extremists linked to Al Shabaab, a militant group that has carried out attacks in Kenya in response to Kenya’s military intervention in Somalia. Violent crime

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also poses a threat. Full details of our travel advice for British Nationals can be found online. The FCO keeps its travel advice under constant review.

Middle East

Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how often the official Envoy of the Quartet on the Middle East reports back to the Quartet constituent parties; what form that reporting takes; if he will publish a URL link to published outputs of the Envoy's work; how many visits the Envoy has made to the Middle East since his appointment in June 2007; how many of these visits were to (a) Israel, (b) the West Bank Palestinian Territories and (c) the Gaza Palestinian Territories; and what the annual cost to the UK has been of supporting the office and travel of the Envoy. [202106]

Hugh Robertson: We do not collect information on how often the official Envoy of the Quartet reports back to the United Nations, the United States and Russia. The Envoy regularly reports back on his work to the European Union and its member states and we remain in close contact with him. This is in the form of meetings with Ministers and senior officials and the sharing of reports. The Office of the Quartet Representative’s website, which contains information about the published outputs of the Envoy’s work, is:

http://www.quartetrep.org/

We do not collect information on how many visits of the Special Envoy to the Middle East Quartet has made. This type of information is not held centrally.

The Government does not provide any financial contribution towards maintaining the Office of the Quartet Representative (OQR) or towards the Envoys travel. However, the Department for International Development (DFID) currently seconds two civil servants to the Office of the Quartet Representative in Jerusalem, the cost of which for 2013-14 was £257,885.

Nick de Bois: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the implications for the Middle East peace process of then-Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh's statement in April 2014 that kidnapping Israelis was a top priority on the agenda of Hamas and the Palestinian resistance. [202235]

Hugh Robertson: The statement made by the then-Hamas Prime Minister in April 2014 was deplorable and only serves to perpetuate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The new Palestinian interim technocratic government contains no Hamas members, and has signed up to the international community's principles: non-violence, a negotiated two state solution, and an acceptance of all previous agreements and obligations, including Israel's legitimate right to exist. We now look to the new government to demonstrate these commitments through its actions as well as its words.

Northern Ireland

Mr Ivan Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to the commitment made by the UK Government in its

1 July 2014 : Column 602W

economic pact with the Northern Ireland Executive in June 2013, what specific actions he has taken to encourage British embassies in emerging markets to promote jobs and growth in Northern Ireland. [202074]

Mr Swire: The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) works to support business from across the United Kingdom. Over the last few years we have expanded our diplomatic presence in key high growth markets, which has allowed us to increase engagement and reach, including in the fastest growing cities outside major capitals. This network works for open markets and free trade conditions, promotes the UK through the GREAT campaign, and supports individual companies in pursuit of specific business opportunities.

United Kingdom Trade and Investment works closely with Invest Northern Ireland, Northern Ireland’s trade and investment organisation, to ensure that all our businesses have access to the full range of UKTI services, as well as the additional support provided by each of the devolved Administrations. In June 2013, the FCO organised a very successful G8 summit at Lough Erne, Northern Ireland. The G8 Summit demonstrated to the global community that Northern Ireland is a first class destination for business and tourism. In October 2013 Invest Northern Ireland, working with UKTI, organised an investment conference which attracted 121 international companies. Inward investment visits for the period from October to December 2013, following both the G8 summit and the investment conference increased by 162% year-on-year.

Occupied Territories

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 19 June 2014, Official Report, column 710W, on Palestinians, what response Prime Minister Netanyahu's office made on the issue of demolitions in East Jerusalem or the rest of the Occupied Palestinian Territories. [202651]

Hugh Robertson: Prime Minister Netanyahu's office informed our officials that demolitions take place where building has occurred without a permit from the Israeli authorities. And that—as per the Oslo accords—Israel has planning authority over these areas. They also said that they therefore have the right to evict people and demolish structures, where they consider building to have taken place illegally under Israeli law.

Palestinians

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has made to his counterparts in the Israeli government about the treatment of Palestinian child detainees in Israel. [202103]

Hugh Robertson: The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, my right hon. Friend the Member for Epsom and Ewell (Chris Grayling), raised the treatment of child detainees with the Israeli Supreme Court President during his visit to Israel in May. I wrote to the Israeli Attorney-General on this issue on 31 March 2014.

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Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether the UK will support the request from the Palestinian Authority for an emergency session of the UN Security Council on the treatment of Palestinian detainees. [202109]

Hugh Robertson: The UK is concerned about the situation of Palestinians in Israeli detention, and we raise this issue regularly with the Israeli authorities. However, the Palestinian Authority has not made a formal request for an emergency session of the UN Security Council to address this issue.

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what reports he has received on the release of Eyal Yifrah, Gilad Sha'ar and Naftali Frenkel, who were abducted in the West Bank on 12 June 2014. [202606]

Hugh Robertson: As of 30 June, we have received no reports that the three kidnapped Israeli teenagers have been released.

Mr Ward: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress he has made in ensuring that Palestinian children are interrogated only in the presence of their parents and lawyers. [202608]

Hugh Robertson: The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, my right hon. Friend the Member for Epsom and Ewell (Chris Grayling), raised the treatment of child detainees with the Israeli Supreme Court President during his visit to Israel in May.

As a recent progress report by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) indicates, Israel has taken some positive steps towards addressing the recommendations in UNICEF’s Children in Israeli Military Detention report. These include the introduction of legal obligations to inform the child’s parents of an arrest and grant them legal status to be represented in court, as well as to notify minors of their legal rights, and standard operating procedures on methods of restraint. We will continue to work, both through bilateral engagement and through the EU, to encourage Israel to take further positive steps.

Guto Bebb: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent reports he has received on the three Israeli teenagers kidnapped in the West Bank on 12 June 2014; and what steps he has taken to secure their release. [202712]

Hugh Robertson: I refer my hon. Friend to my answer of 26 June 2014, Official Report, column 258W.

Seychelles

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the level of corruption in the Seychelles and the consequent effect on the UK's and International Monetary Fund's financial commitments to that country. [202497]

Mark Simmonds: Transparency International ranked Seychelles as the 47th least corrupt country globally in their 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index. This was an

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improvement of four places from 2012. The UK does not provide direct financial assistance to Seychelles but contributes to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) whose support has enabled the country to enact a comprehensive program of economic reforms since 2008. The IMF has robust systems in place to ensure the proper use of assistance given to the Government of Seychelles.

St Lucia

Priti Patel: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when it is planned that Government Ministers from St Lucia will next visit the UK. [202663]

Mark Simmonds: The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague) hosted the UK-Caribbean Forum on 16-17 June 2014. St Lucia’s Foreign Minister attended the Forum. In line with our bilateral engagement, we will continue to explore opportunities for visits.

Priti Patel: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will discuss with his counterparts in St Lucia the effectiveness of the St Lucian (a) criminal justice system and (b) forensic laboratories in relation to the investigation of the Gloria Greenwood murder and prosecution of suspects. [202664]

Mark Simmonds: The FCO is supporting wider HMG efforts to build St Lucia’s judicial capacity to prosecute serious crime, including through forensic analysis training. This targeted support includes the deployment of a Crown Prosecution Service criminal justice advisor to the Eastern Caribbean. Officials will continue to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of our assistance. Last August, I raised the issues with St Lucia’s Prime Minister. More recently, St Lucia’s Foreign Minister attended the 16-17 June UK-Caribbean Forum which included a focused session on criminal justice reform. Consular officials remain in close contact with the authorities with regard to the investigation into the tragic murder of Gloria Greenwood and continue to provide full consular assistance to her family.

Sudan

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make representations to his Sudan counterpart on that government's attitude towards its Christian communities. [202476]

Mark Simmonds: We regularly raise our concerns with the Government of Sudan about religious persecutions and the need to respect freedom of religion or belief for all its citizens. My officials have recently made representations to the Foreign Minister, urging the Government to respect the right to freedom of religion or belief including one’s right to follow the religion or belief of choice. This right is enshrined in international human rights law as well as in Sudan’s own 2005 Interim Constitution. We will continue to raise these issues.

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Ukraine

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the implications for the UK of the decision of the EU Council to implement restrictive measures on trade with Crimea and Sevastopol on 25 June 2014; and if he will make a statement. [202624]

Mr Lidington: According to Ukrainian official statistics approximately 1.3% of Ukraine’s total exports of goods came from Crimea in 2012. For the UK, the pro rata figure would equate to roughly £3.5 million per year. The impact of this regulation on UK-Crimea trade will depend on the amount of goods originating in Crimea or Sevastopol that comply with the criteria stipulated within the regulation.

Cabinet Office

Alcoholic Drinks: Misuse

Luciana Berger: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many people aged (a) under 18 and (b) 18 years and over died as a consequence of a condition related to alcohol misuse in each year since 2010. [202826]

Mr Hurd: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Glen Watson, dated June 2014:

As Director General for the Office for National Statistics, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking how many people aged (a) under 18 and (b) 18 years and over died as a consequence of a condition related to alcohol misuse in each year since 2010. (202826)

Table 1 provides the number of deaths where the underlying cause of death was alcohol related for persons (a) under 18 years and (b) 18 years and over in England and Wales, for each year from 2010 to 2012 (the latest year available).

Alcohol-related deaths are reported consistently across the United Kingdom using an agreed National Statistics definition that only includes those causes regarded as being most directly due to alcohol consumption (see Box 1 below). Apart from deaths due to poisoning with alcohol (accidental, intentional or undetermined), this definition excludes any other external causes of death, such as road traffic and other accidents.

Alcohol-related death figures for the UK, England, Wales, and regions of England, for 1991 to 2012 are available on the ONS website at:

www.ons.gov.uk/ons/publications/all-releases.html?definition=tcm%3A77-29395

Table 1: Number of deaths where the underlying cause was alcohol-related, for persons (a) under 18 years and (b) 18 years and over, England and Wales, deaths registered in each year from 2010 to 20121, 2, 3
Deaths (persons)
Registration yearUnder 1818 and over

2010

2

7,186

2011

1

7,248

2012

1

7,016

1 Alcohol-related deaths are defined using the International Classifications of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10) codes outlined in Box 1 below. 2 Figures include deaths of non-residents. 3 Figures are based on deaths that registered, rather than deaths that occurred in each calendar year. In 2012, the median registration period for alcohol-related deaths was four days. More information about registration delays can be found on the ONS website at: www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/subnational-health4/alcohol-related-deaths-in-the-united-kingdom/2012/stb---alcohol-related-deaths-in-the-united-kingdom--registered-in-2012.html#tab-Registration-Delays

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Box 1, alcohol-related deaths were defined using the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10) codes in the table below:

DescriptionICD 10 codes

Mental and behavioural disorders due to use of alcohol

F10

Degeneration of nervous system due to alcohol

G31.2

Alcoholic polyneuropathy

G62.1

Alcoholic cardiomyopathy

I42.6

Alcoholic gastritis

K29.2

Alcoholic liver disease

K70

Chronic hepatitis, not elsewhere classified

K73

Fibrosis and cirrhosis of liver

K74 excluding K74.3-K74.5

Alcohol induced chronic pancreatitis

K86.0

Accidental poisoning by and exposure to alcohol

X45

Intentional self-poisoning by and exposure to alcohol

X65

Poisoning by and exposure to alcohol, undetermined intent

Y15

Billing

Nick de Bois: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office pursuant to the answer of 25 June 2014, Official Report, column 228W, on billing, what the value is of the sums being claimed by outstanding creditors at 31 May 2014. [202832]

Mr Maude: The value of sums being claimed by non-government creditors at 31 May 2014, can be found in the following table. All unpaid invoices are in dispute.

Number of days unpaidValue (£)

45 - 59

120,891.87

60-74

293,868.79

75 and over

334,974.27

Construction

Chi Onwurah: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) what security standards his Department mandates with Level 2 Building Information Modelling; [202666]

(2) what assessment he has made of the cost to industry of his Department's requirement for Level 2 Building Information Modelling. [202615]

Mr Maude: Building Information Modelling Level 2 operates alongside well-established industry standards such as ISO27001. Departments may specify additional security requirements as appropriate.

Industry has responded positively to the introduction of Building Information Modelling Level 2, which represents the construction sector response to the Government’s “Digital by Default” initiative.

BIM does not mandate the use of any specific software or hardware and supports innovation through its use of open standards. For SMEs BIM levels the playing field, allowing them to make their products immediately accessible to a global market, using freely-available tools.

BIM represents an opportunity for UK industry to increase efficiency, its know-how and exports, thereby continuing its significant global presence in construction design and delivery.

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Cybercrime

Mr Steve Reed: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what progress has been made by the UK Computer Emergency Response Team since its launch on 31 March 2014; and if she will make a statement. [202609]

Mr Maude: Cyber Security is one of the Government’s top four security priorities. CERT-UK is working closely with partners across industry, Government, academia and internationally, to enhance the UK’s ability to prepare for and manage national cyber security incidents. It collaborates with law enforcement colleagues to support campaigns aimed at combating cyber-crime and cyber fraud.

Vetting

Steve McCabe: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) how many staff working (a) at No. 10 Downing Street and (b) for the Prime Minister (i) have been allowed to attend National Security Council meetings and (ii) had access to Top Secret meetings or documents without being required to have had a security vetting, since May 2010; [202411]

(2) how many people working (a) at No. 10 Downing Street and (b) on the Prime Minister's staff since May 2010 have not been required to undergo security vetting; how many such staff have undergone security vetting; and what the job titles and responsibilities are of all such staff. [202412]

Mr Maude: Attendance at internal meetings is not normally disclosed.

It has been the policy of successive Governments not to comment about staff subject to national security vetting.

Communities and Local Government

Billing

Nick de Bois: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many creditors remained unpaid by his Department on 1 June 2014; and of those, how many had been unpaid for (a) 45 days, (b) 60 days, (c) 75 days and (d) more than 76 days. [202111]

Brandon Lewis: My Department has a cross-government target of paying 80% of invoices within five days of receipt. In 2013-14, we paid 84% of invoices within that target.

As of 1 June 2014, there was just one outstanding creditor unpaid, in each case, for (a) 45-59 days, (b) 60-75 days and (c) over 76 days.

There were a further 24 outstanding creditors of shorter durations.

To place this in context, in 2013-14, my Department paid 11,937 invoices.

Cemeteries: Planning Permission

Dr Offord: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance his Department has published for the use of local authorities in determining planning permission applications for the creation of cemeteries. [200634]

1 July 2014 : Column 608W

Nick Boles: In March, we published new planning guidance, which local planning authorities can use when determining planning applications. It explains that planning applications are considered on their own merits and, by law, must be determined in accordance with the development plan for the area, unless material considerations indicate otherwise. The ‘Open space, sports and recreation facilities’ section of the guidance addresses provision of open spaces of public value.

More broadly, separate to the planning system, the underlying statutory duties for local (burial) authorities are outlined in the Local Authorities Cemeteries Order 1977. The associated guidance is overseen by the Ministry for Justice, and is available at:

www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/burials-and-coroners/burial-ground-managers.pdf

Coastal Communities Fund

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether levels of poverty and deprivation in coastal towns are considered by his Department when making grants from the Coastal Communities Fund. [202072]

Brandon Lewis: Grant applicants submitting bids to the Coastal Communities Fund are expected to demonstrate the need for their project, which can include levels of poverty and deprivation in their area. This information is one of a range of factors that are taken into account in the assessment of grant applications. However, the Fund is not specifically targeted on deprived coastal towns. Its aim is to support jobs and growth in coastal communities across the United Kingdom where projects can best exploit local assets and opportunities to unlock their growth potential. In addition to demonstrating need, applications to the Fund must be clearly linked to an economic opportunity to create and safeguard jobs within the coastal community. Coastal flooding and erosion risk management and repair are also priorities for grant aid where proposed works support economic development.

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what grants have been given by the Coastal Communities Fund to date; which town, county and parliamentary constituency received each such grant; and what the size and purpose of each grant was. [202076]

Kris Hopkins: The Coastal Communities Fund supports economic growth and jobs in coastal communities across the United Kingdom. We have awarded a total of 104 grants under the Fund to date in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland at a total value of £53.6 million. A table has been placed in the Library of the House giving the details requested for all 104 grants.

Decisions on grant awards in England are taken by Government Ministers. In Wales and Northern Ireland grant awards are taken by panels involving officials from the BIG Lottery Fund and devolved Administrations, and in Scotland by independently appointed panels.

Council Tax Reduction Schemes

Andy Sawford: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much

1 July 2014 : Column 609W

funding his Department provided to billing authorities for council tax support schemes in

(a)

2013-14 and

(b)

2014-15. [202393]

Brandon Lewis: The Government provided £3.3 billion to local authorities for localised council tax support in 2013-14 and has made available the same amount in 2014-15.

Andy Sawford: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what assessment he has made of the effect of the localisation of council tax support on the operation and activities of parish and town councils; [202394]

(2) what steps his Department is taking to ensure that council tax support funding is passed on from billing authorities to parish and town councils in 2014-15. [202395]

Brandon Lewis: I refer the hon. Member to the Written Ministerial Statement of 5 February 2014, Official Report, column 19-21WS, which sets out clearly the Government’s intention that the element of localised council tax support funding provided to local authorities which reflects reductions in town and parish tax bases should be passed down to those councils.

I additionally wrote to Leaders of billing authorities on this issue on 6 January and 21 February 2014.

The design and management of council tax support schemes is a local matter, and it is for local councils to work together to ensure that any relevant impacts are understood and taken into account.

Disciplinary Proceedings

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what proportion of staff within his Department who have been subject to formal disciplinary proceedings in each of the last five financial years classed themselves as white British; [199878]

(2) what proportion of staff within his Department who have been dismissed following formal disciplinary proceedings in each of the last five financial years classed themselves as white British. [199899]

Brandon Lewis: It is not possible to provide definitive or meaningful percentages, as (a) not all staff declare their ethnicity, (b) due to the manner in which white ethnicity data is self-reported by staff , and (c) the sample sizes are so small as to be statistically misleading when comparing years.

Fire Services

Lyn Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate he has made of how many pumps were available in each fire and rescue authority (a) during periods of Fire Brigades Union strike action in 2013-14 and (b) on comparable non-strike days in the same period. [202818]

Brandon Lewis: I refer the hon. Member to my answer of 30 June 2014, Official Report, column 409-410W.

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Fire Services: Pensions

Chris Williamson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether his Department plans to carry out further consultations on changes to firefighter pensions in order to reach a settlement to the dispute on this issue. [201639]

Brandon Lewis: On 23 May 2014 we published a second consultation on the draft regulations to implement the Firefighters’ Pension Scheme 2015. Under the scheme design a firefighter who earns £29,000 and retires after a full career aged 60 will get a £19,000 a year pension. The Department will carry out further consultations during 2014 on the governance and transitional arrangements for the firefighter pension reforms. I do not intend to consult again on the draft regulations on which I am currently consulting. The Fire Brigades Union should engage in the current formal consultation process rather than pursuing unnecessary industrial action. The consultation can be found at

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/consultation-on-the-regulations-to-introduce-a-new-firefighters-pension-scheme-from-april-2015

and copies have been placed in the Library of the House.

Lyn Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to his Department's publication of work carried out by the Government Actuary's Department Costings and Correspondence on 12 June 2014, what plans he has to bring forward new proposals based on options set out in that document negotiations on firefighters' pensions. [202716]

Brandon Lewis: As set out in my response to the hon. Member of 24 June 2014, Official Report, column 131W, we are currently consulting on draft regulations to implement the Firefighters’ Pension Scheme 2015 and this consultation concludes on 4 July 2014. The Department will consider all the responses received to that consultation and final decisions will subsequently be taken on the design of the scheme to be implemented. It is open to the Fire Brigades Union, or any other interested party, to respond to the consultation in a way that builds on the costings carried out on behalf of the Union by the Government Actuary’s Department. However, it would be premature to pre-empt the outcome of that consultation.

Hedges and Ditches

Richard Fuller: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will review the effectiveness of Part 8 of the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003; and if he will bring forward legislative proposals to extend the scope of these provisions to include complaints on high hedges. [200895]

Nick Boles: Part 8 of the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 (‘High hedges’) addresses private disputes about tall evergreen hedges adversely affecting neighbouring homes and gardens. We have no current plans to undertake a specific review of this part of the 2003 Act.

1 July 2014 : Column 611W

Parish Councils

Andy Sawford: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps his Department is taking to make parish and town councils aware of the general power of competence in the Localism Act 2011. [202397]

Brandon Lewis: We are proud of our parish and town councils and the role they play in transforming public services. Any parish or town council can take steps to become eligible to use the general power of competence. When the general power of competence was commenced in February 2012 the Government produced guidance on using the power to hold prayers as part of the formal business at council meetings and wrote to the Society of Local Council Clerks. In July 2013, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, my right hon. Friend the Member for Brentwood and Ongar (Mr Pickles), addressed the Local Government Association/National Association of Local Councils conference on the general power of competence, encouraging all councils to use the power innovatively without looking to Whitehall for permission.

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/general-power-of-competence-speech

We have worked with the National Association of Local Councils to update the mandatory training module required for clerks to be qualified, as part of eligibility criteria for parish councils to be able to use the general power of competence.

Parking

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will place in the Library the impact assessment his Department prepared alongside its response to the consultation on local authority parking. [202288]

Brandon Lewis: The Government has recently published the response to the consultation, which outlines the broad series of policies to tackle unreasonable and unfair parking enforcement, support local shops and reverse the Labour Government’s war on the motorist.

We will assess in due course whether an Impact Assessment is required for the implementation of any of the specific measures, in line with the prevailing HM Government guidance on Impact Assessments.

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what his policy is on permitting motorists to park briefly on double yellow lines, single yellow lines or loading bays; and if he will make a statement. [202322]

Brandon Lewis: In December, our consultation on parking asked for comments on the scope for introducing new grace periods for parking, including what areas it should apply to. In the recently published Government response to the consultation, we announced we will introduce a mandatory 10 minute free period (a) at the end of paid-for on-street parking, (b) at the end of free on-street parking, and (c) extend the same grace period to local authority off-street parking.

1 July 2014 : Column 612W

This measure will support local shops and stop shoppers being penalised for returning to their car a few minutes late. This Government recognises that if parking on local high streets and shopping parades is made too difficult, shoppers will merely drive to out of town superstores or just shop online. Our position is in stark contrast to the Labour Government which actively encouraged councils to hike parking charges, cut the number of car parking spaces and adopt aggressive parking enforcement.

Parking Offences: Appeals

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what estimate he has made of the potential additional cost to the Traffic Penalty Tribunal Appeals Service if a 25 per cent discount on the full price of their parking ticket is given to motorists who lose an appeal against that parking ticket at tribunal; [202309]

(2) what estimate he has made of the additional cost of additional appeals to the Parking Traffic Appeals Service if a 25 per cent discount is given to motorists who lose an appeal at tribunal against the issue of a parking ticket. [202438]

Brandon Lewis: As recommended by the Transport Select Committee (Local authority parking enforcement, HC 118, October 2013), the Government intends to work in partnership with a local authority to assess introducing a 25% discount to motorists who lose an appeal at tribunal level. This trial will allow us to evaluate the impacts, before rolling out the policy nationally.

The underlying policy rationale is the current lack of any discount at an appeal stage (but with a discount operating if the driver does not appeal) acts as a disincentive for drivers with genuine cases to appeal. I would remind the right hon. Member that parking fines are a quasi-judicial process, not a source of revenue for councils. This Government believes in fairness, in contrast to the Labour Government which actively told councils to adopt aggressive parking enforcement practices.

Queen's Park Community Council

Andy Sawford: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment he has made of the performance of Queen's Park Community Council since its establishment on 1 April 2014; and if he will make a statement. [202396]

Brandon Lewis: We have not made an assessment of the performance of the new Queen’s Park Community Council since its establishment on 1 April 2014. The new council had its first elections on 22 May 2014 and it is therefore still very early in the life of the council. Unlike the last Labour Government, we do not micro-manage the performance of councils.

Voluntary Organisations

Andrew Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate he has made of the total value of (a) public service contracts and (b) grants that were awarded by local authorities to voluntary sector organisations in the last year for which figures are available. [202409]

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Brandon Lewis [holding answer 30 June 2014]: Our most recent estimates suggest that local authorities in England gave £1.1 billion in grants to voluntary bodies in 2012-13. A further £23.9 billion was spent on public service contracts, which would include those awarded to both voluntary and private sector bodies (a breakdown between the two is not available). These figures are based on updated methodology and returns, and are not comparative to the previous figures supplied to my hon. Friend.

Wind Power: Planning Permission

Mr Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government against what criteria he will consider the recovery of an appeal against the refusal of an application for planning permission for a wind turbine. [202324]

Kris Hopkins: I refer my hon. and learned Friend to the written ministerial statement of 9 April 2014, Official Report, columns 12-13WS.

Written Questions: Government Responses

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when he will answer question 200690 tabled by the hon. Member for Leeds Central on 13 June 2014. [202295]

Kris Hopkins: Question 200690 was answered on 26 June 2014, Official Report, column 270W.

Electoral Commission Committee

Electoral Register

Chris Ruane: To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, with reference to the answer of 2 April 2014, Official Report, column 681W, on electoral register, how many students were registered to vote as a result of the cross-referencing of data from the Student Loans Company in the data matching pilots. [202245]

Mr Streeter: The Commission informs me that in total, across the two separate pilot schemes which the Commission evaluated, 37 new electors were added to the registers, as a result of Student Loans Company data, in the particular areas undertaking the data mining pilots.

Electoral Register: Young People

Chris Ruane: To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, with reference to the answer of 30 April 2014, Official Report, column 711W, on electoral register, if the Electoral Commission will

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make it its policy to collect data on the number and percentage of attainers registered to vote. [202067]

Mr Streeter: The Electoral Commission informs me that the Office for National Statistics (ONS) collect the number of attainers on the registers published following each annual canvass.

The ONS also publishes population estimates by single year of age which make it possible to calculate rough percentages of attainers registered. However, these proportions are approximations as the number for attainers on the register is likely to include some duplicate entries and the population estimates will include people who are ineligible to register to vote.

The Electoral Commission has access to this data and therefore informs me that it currently has no plans to collect information itself on the number and percentage of attainers registered to vote each year. The Commission does, however, periodically produce research on the completeness and accuracy of electoral registers, which includes information on attainers. The next of these reports is expected to be published in July.

Women and Equalities

Performance Appraisal

Mrs Lewell-Buck: To ask the Ministers for Women and Equalities what proportion of (a) disabled and (b) all other staff employed by the Government Equalities Office received each level of performance rating in their end of year performance assessment for 2013-14. [202057]

Mrs Grant: The table sets out the percentage of employees, within each performance category, who have declared a disability, and the percentage of all other staff in each performance category for the 2013-14 reporting year for assessments received to date. The percentage of all other staff includes staff who have either explicitly declared that they do not have a disability, have chosen the ‘prefer not to say’ option, or have not responded to the question at all.

Percentage
 ExcellentGoodMust improve

Percentage of employees who have declared a disability in each performance rating

0

4.2

8.3

Percentage of all other staff employed in each performance rating

33.3

45.8

8.3

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) takes seriously its obligations to collect diversity data as required by the Equality Act 2010. All staff have been asked to provide personal diversity data to be held anonymously, and we continue to encourage increased declaration by staff. As such these figures will not be fully representative of work force diversity.