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Lord Jenkins of Putney asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: No. We have supported EU calls for fissile material not used for military purposes to be brought under existing international safeguards. We have confidence in the current safeguards régimes and believe this approach is more sensible than starting negotiations on a new security system.

European Commission Unified External Service

Lord Bruce of Donington asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The establishment of the Unified External Service falls within the European Commission's power to organise its own departments. There is therefore no requirement on the

31 May 1995 : Column WA77

Commission to obtain authority to establish or operate this service. The service enables the Commission to carry out the functions delegated to it, particularly in relation to development assistance and the common commercial policy.

South Korea: Unified UN Command

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they agreed to the transfer of command of "UN forces" in South Korea to a South Korean general last year.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: I refer the noble Lord to my reply of 6 April 1995, at col. WA 33. The United Nations Command in Korea has no forces of its own, so the question of an agreement to a transfer of command does not arise.

Korea: UN Command

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Who is currently in command of the "Unified United Nations Command" in Korea, what is the scope of this Commander's authority, and what duty he has to report to the United Nations or to those governments who sent forces to participate in the United Nations action in Korea.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The Commander in Chief of the United Nations Command in Korea is currently General Gary Luck. He makes regular and special reports to the United Nations Security Council in accordance with Security Council Resolution 84 of 1950. These are forwarded by the United States Ambassador to the UN to the Secretary General, who in turn circulates them to the representatives of all UN member states. The last regular report was distributed as UN document S/1995/378 of 11 May 1995; the last special report was distributed as S/1995/156 of 24 February 1995.

US-Republic of Korea: Military Exercises

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether, in pursuit of their droit de regard over the Unified United Nations Command's activities in South Korea, they have considered whether the military exercises conducted in and around the Korean peninsula by the US-Republic of Korea Combined Forces and the announced 120,000 strong, South Korean-only, three service exercises, to be conducted in October, are conducive to "negotiations towards achieving a peaceful settlement in the Korean peninsula" (H.L. Deb., 6 April 1995, Col. WA 33).

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: Military exercises conducted by the US-Republic of Korea combined forces or by the Korean armed forces alone are undertaken to maintain the defensive capabilities of such forces. In the interests of building confidence and reducing the risk of conflict on the Peninsula, North Korea has been regularly invited to send observers to such exercises in the past. Sadly, such invitations have always been refused.

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Korean Peninsula: Peace Settlement

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether some mitigation of the South Korean National Security Law (which forbids South Koreans, under pain of imprisonment from visiting North Korea) might help the achievement of "a peaceful settlement in the Korean Peninsula" (H.L. Deb., 6 April 1995, Col. WA 33).

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The best prospects for achieving peace on the Korea peninsula lie in a resumption of dialogue between the governments of North and South Korea. Sadly, despite repeated urgings by the international community, North Korea at present refuses to enter into such a dialogue.

Peninsular Nuclear Energy: Funding

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they are contributing funds to replacement nuclear reactors to be built in North Korea.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: We have contributed $1 million to the start-up costs of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organisation for non-proliferation purposes.

North Korea: Light Water Reactors

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they have accepted the South Korean demand, that under the agreement between North Korea and the United States whereby light water reactors are to be provided to North Korea, only South Korean-designed and built reactors should be offered to North Korea, and, if so, why they are supporting this demand, when alternative, proven reactors can be made available.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The provision of light water reactors to North Korea is the subject of negotiations between the US, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (ROK) within the framework of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organisation. We will support any decision that is acceptable to the three parties directly involved in these negotiations.

UK Permanent Representative to UN: Pension

Lord Stoddart of Swindon asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the post of United Kingdom Permanent Representative to the United Nations is pensionable.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The post of the United Kingdom Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York is currently held by a member of the Diplomatic Service, whose salary is pensionable.

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Ascension Island and Diego Garcia Facilities: Agreements

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they interpret their agreements with the United States concerning Ascension Island and Diego Garcia as permitting the US Government to use the facilities they occupy on those islands for the purposes of pre-emptive counter-proliferation, as envisaged in the Defense Counter-proliferation Initiative announced by US Secretary of Defence Les Aspen in December 1993 and since elaborated by members of the US Government.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The use of the facilities on Ascension Island and Diego Garcia is governed by the agreements and exchanges of notes to which the noble Lord refers and which are available in the treaty series.

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will now discuss with the Australian and other Indian Ocean Governments the uses being made of Diego Garcia, and any possible expansion of those uses to include "floating arsenals" or counter-proliferation systems and equipment, particularly in view of the global range intended for the United States Defense Counter-proliferation Initiative.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The use of the facilities on Diego Garcia is governed by the various exchanges of notes between the United Kingdom and the United States which are published in the treaty series. No other governments are concerned.

Namibia: Aid Access to Angola

Lord Avebury asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will ask the Namibian government to allow humanitarian organisations to deliver aid across the border to Angola.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The main border crossing point is open to traffic and humanitarian organisations are free to use it for aid deliveries to Angola. We therefore see no need to make representations to the Namibian government.

Angola: Humanitarian Assistance

Lord Avebury asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will encourage humanitarian organisations in Angola to disperse their operations to the regions, so as to secure greater uniformity, and to decrease the pull exerted by Luanda which is drawing people from other parts of the country.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: Action is already being taken and will continue as access improves. The UN's Humanitarian Assistance Co-ordination Unit in Angola (UCAH) leads on ensuring that emergency assistance through humanitarian organisations is targeted at areas of greatest need throughout the country. We continue to support UCAH in this task.

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Angola: UN Observers

Lord Avebury asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the United Nations have asked to station any observers at Catumbela airport in Angola.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey: The UN has not asked to station any observers at Catumbela. It has been able to make use of the facilities for deployment of elements of UNAVEM III.


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