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4 May 1995 : Column WA121

Written Answers

Thursday, 4th May 1995.

"Remedying Environmental Damage": Government Response

Lord Brougham and Vaux asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When they intend to publish their response to the Report Remedying Environmental Damage by the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Communities.

The Minister of State, Department of the Environment (Viscount Ullswater): The Department of the Environment has today published the Government's response to the Committee's report and copies have been placed in the Library of the House.

Court Users: Survey Report

Lord Brougham and Vaux asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When an announcement will be made about the results of the national survey of court users.

The Lord Chancellor (Lord Mackay of Clashfern): The report on the findings of the survey is published today, and copies have been placed in the Library.

Abortions

Lord Braine of Wheatley asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will publish in the Official Report a table showing:— (a) the total number of abortions performed under the terms of the Abortion Act 1967 as amended by Section 34 of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990, from April 1968 to the latest available date; (b) the total number of abortions according to the grounds of termination in each year since 1990 for 24 weeks and each week thereafter; (c) the total number of abortions according to the grounds of termination in each year since 1968 for girls aged 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18 and for women over the age of 35; (d) the total number of abortions performed in 1992; and how many of these were performed (i) in an emergency to save the life of the mother, and (ii) where rape was mentioned; and (e) the provisional estimate of the total number of abortions performed in 1993 and 1994.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Baroness Cumberlege): The information requested will be placed in the Library.

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Fetus: Sensory Development

Lord Braine of Wheatley asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What evidence they have that an unborn child is capable of feeling pain and whether they will place in the Library of the House any such evidence.

Baroness Cumberlege: A report on the subject of sensory development in the human fetus was prepared for the Department in 1988 by Dr. Maria Fitzgerald. A copy is available in the Library.

Manufacturing Industries: Employees

Lord Dean of Beswick asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will publish the figures of the number of people employed in the manufacturing industries for each year from 1979.

Lord Inglewood: The information requested is shown in the following table: Employees in manufacturing industry in the United Kingdom


    (Thousands)


    1979: 7,195


    1980: 6,536


    1981: 6,050


    1982: 5,669


    1983: 5,455


    1984: 5,399


    1985: 5,339


    1986: 5,173


    1987: 5,191


    1988: 5,224


    1989: 5,190


    1990: 4,976


    1991: 4,607


    1992: 4,366


    1993: 4,353


    1994: 4,369

December of each year (seasonally adjusted) Source: Workforce in Employment (WiE) series

Travel and Tourism: Employees

The Earl of Bradford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many people are employed in the United Kingdom travel and tourism industry.

Lord Inglewood: Information for tourism-related industries is available only for Great Britain. In December 1994, there were 1,475,000 employees in these industries.

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Civil Service and Armed Forces: Relaxation of Entry Requirements

Lord Lester of Herne Hill asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Answer of Viscount Cranborne on 5th April 1995, (H.L. deb. col. WA21), what are the posts on the civilian side of the Ministry of Defence for which the nationality of the applicant's parents remains a factor in the recruitment criteria because of national security considerations.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Henley): Although it would not be appropriate to identify posts individually, special employment rules relating to national extraction now apply only to certain intelligence posts in the defence area where potential conflicts of interest justify them.

Organophosphate Sheep Dips: Health Effects

The Countess of Mar asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether research into the chronic effects on human health of exposure to organophosphate sheep dips is being carried out by the Chemical and Biological Defence Establishment, Porton Down.

Lord Henley: This is a matter for the Chief Executive of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency. I have therefore asked him to reply. Letter to the Countess of Mar from the Chief Executive of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency dated 4 May 1995:

Your question about whether research into organophosphate sheep dips is being carried out by the Chemical and Biological Defence Establishment (CBDE) at Porton Down has been passed to me to reply as Chief Executive of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA). DERA which was formed on 1 April 1995 now includes CBDE as one of its divisions.

CBDE is not currently conducting any research into the chronic effects on health of organophosphate sheep dips. CBDE is aware that the HSE, MAFF and the Department of Health are presently attempting to set up a study into the long term health effects of the organophosphates used in sheep dips and in conjunction with the University of Bristol submitted tender proposals for the contract. This was not accepted and the study has now been readvertised. CBDE is considering whether to reapply.

I hope this is helpful.

European Union: UK Membership

Lord Tebbit asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the reply by Baroness Chalker of Wallasey of 22 March 1995 (H.L. WA 76), setting out the procedure for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, whether

4 May 1995 : Column WA124

    Ministers authorised the Memorandum on the United Kingdom Government's Approach to the Treatment of European Defence Issues at the 1996 Inter-Governmental Conference submitted by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as evidence to IGC Sub-Committee of the European Communities Committee in which it is stated in paragraph 3, "Britain is irrevocably part of the European Union".

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Chalker of Wallasey): The Memorandum on the United Kingdom Government's Approach to the Treatment of European Defence Issues at the 1996 Inter-Governmental Conference was presented to Parliament by the Prime Minister on 1 March.

European Court of Justice: Judgments

Lord Tebbit asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the reply of Baroness Chalker of Wallasey of 3 April 1995 (H.L. Deb. col.5) to Lord Bruce of Donington that "a number of recent cases show that the European Court of Justice is now more sensitive to member states' anxieties", they will state which cases have been decided on the basis of sensitivity to the anxieties of litigants rather than the law of the European Union.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The European Court of Justice is required by Article 164 of the Treaty of Rome to ensure that, in the interpretation and application of the treaties, the law is observed. We welcome the fact that, in fulfilling this function, the Court has shown itself to be increasingly aware of member states' legitimate concerns. This was clear, for example, in the recent World Trade Organisation/GATT opinion, and cases on Sunday trading, lotteries and trademarks.

Kibeho: UNAMIR

Lord Judd asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they are satisfied with the way in which the UNAMIR (United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda), is discharging its mandate in regard to the protection of internally displaced people in south-west Rwanda.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: We welcome the contribution UNAMIR's presence has made to restoration of stability and security in Rwanda. We support the international enquiry, in which the UK will participate, into recent events at Kibeho. The UN Secretary-General has also despatched a special envoy to Rwanda following the recent incidents. The Security Council will take into account the Secretary-General's views on the future role of UNAMIR in reaching a decision on renewal of its mandate due by 9 June.

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Kibeho: Humanitarian Assistance

Lord Judd asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What representations they are making to the Government of Rwanda regarding the use of lethal force by the Rwandan army in clearing the camps for internally displaced people in south-west Rwanda.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: I have sent messages to the President, Vice-President and Prime Minister of Rwanda expressing our grave concern at the events at Kibeho. Together with EU and Security Council partners, we have stressed the need to ensure the safety of the internally displaced and other refugees. We welcome the proposal for an international inquiry into events at Kibeho and are ready to take part.


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