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27 Jul 2000 : Column WA69

Written Answers

Thursday, 27th July 2000.

Overseas Aid: Debt Relief and AIDS-related Assistance

Lord Hylton asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What proportion of their proposed increase in overseas development aid will be devoted to (a) debt relief and (b) the prevention and treatment of AIDS, and assistance to children orphaned as a result of AIDS and other causes[HL3499]

Baroness Amos: (a) The proportion of DfID's departmental expenditure limit (DEL) earmarked for debt relief over the period 2001-02 to 2003-04 is 1.12 per cent in 2001-02, 1.24 per cent in 2002-03 and 0.18 per cent in 2003-04. This excludes DfID's contribution to EC contributions for debt relief under HIPC, of approximately 43 million euro in both 2001-02 and 2002-03.

(b) DfID's next resource allocation exercise will determine the use of the budget to 2003-04. The outcome will be published in the 2001 departmental report. It is not possible to say at this stage what specific allocation will be made towards prevention and treatment of AIDS and assistance to orphaned children.

Climate Change and Human Migration

Lord Judd asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What contingency plans they are making, together with other governments, to cope with the consequences of any large-scale migration and human displacement which may result from climate change[HL3310]

Baroness Amos: The UK is actively participating in the development of the Third Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This report, to be published in 2001, will assess the state of knowledge on the impacts of climate change, including the possibility of human migration as a result of climate change. This assessment will build on earlier discussion of the issue in the IPCC's Second Assessment Report, published in 1995. Meanwhile we are playing a full part in supporting measures to mitigate the effects of natural disasters, and in establishing effective international and regional mechanisms for responding to them when they do occur.

Nandrolone: Report

Baroness Anelay of St Johns asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When they will publish their response to the UK Sport report on nandrolone which was published in January.[HL3480]

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Lord McIntosh of Haringey: Her Majesty's Government welcomed the UK Sport report into nandrolone when it was published and have been discussing the findings with governing bodies of sport. We are pleased to say the report has been welcomed as a valuable piece of work both at home and abroad.

However, UK Sport has since reconvened the group to look at new developments that have emerged since the publication of the original report. Once UK Sport has made a statement on the new developments, we will respond formally to the report.

Departmental Cars

Lord Hoyle asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Written Answer by Lord McIntosh of Haringey on 11 July (WA 25), which cars supplied by the Government Car and Despatch Agency are for the use of Ministers and senior officials in the Department for Culture, Media and Sport; and what are the numbers, types and makes of the vehicles used.[HL3348]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: I refer the noble Lord to the Answer given by the noble and Learned Lord, Lord Falconer of Thoroton, on 24 July (Official Report, WA 16). The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has five cars for this purpose, supplied by the Government Car and Despatch Agency, comprising three Ford Mondeos, one Vauxhall Vectra and one Vauxhall Omega. The Royal Parks Agency does not use any cars supplied by the GCDA.

Lord Hoyle asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Written Answer by Lord Falconer of Thoroton on 6 July (WA 148), which cars supplied by the Government Car and Despatch Agency are for the use of Ministers and senior officials in the Ministry of Defence; and what are the numbers, types and makes of the vehicles used.[HL3383]

The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence (Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean): I refer the noble Lord to the Answer which my noble friend Lord Falconer gave him on 24 July, WA 16.

Chinook Helicopter ZD576

Earl Attlee asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Written Answer by Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean on 12 July (WA 35) on the Chinook helicopter ZD576, whether they will now say "whether there were any advantages in terms of safety or of time in overflying the Mull of Kintyre rather than following the original flight plan".[HL3400]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: If the strict visibility requirements under visual flight rules had permitted, or the pilots of ZD576 had abided by

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instrument flight rules, there might have been some time advantage in diverting from the original flight plan and overflying the Mull of Kintyre. Whichever route had been chosen, safety would not have been compromised if the crew had adhered to the appropriate rules for the weather conditions encountered.

Offences against the Person Act 1861 and British Troops under NATO Command

Lord Carlile of Berriew asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the provisions of Section 9 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 operate fairly in relation to British soldiers under NATO command.[HL3506]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: Yes. British troops remain subject to English law under whomsoever they serve and wherever they serve in the world.

Immigration Appeals: Revised Rules

Viscount Chandos asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What consultation has taken place about new procedure rules for appeals to the Immigration Appellate Authorities; and when will the new rules be laid before Parliament.[HL3695]

The Lord Chancellor (Lord Irvine of Lairg): A paper highlighting the main issues was laid before Parliament during the passage of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999. Recently, a wide range of users across the United Kingdom, and the Council on Tribunals, were consulted about draft new rules. Changes are being made following that exercise. A cross-section of users has been kept closely in touch throughout development of the rules and that dialogue is continuing. Once this consultation is over, the rules will be laid during the Recess.

Part-time Judicial Appointments

Viscount Chandos asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Written Answers by the Lord Chancellor on 12 April 2000 (WA 41) and 5 June 2000 (WA 139-141) when a further announcement will be made on part-time judicial appointments to tribunals.[HL3696]

The Lord Chancellor: Following the earlier announcements about new arrangements for a number of part-time judicial appointments, similar arrangements have now been put in place for an additional range of part-time tribunal appointments for which I am jointly or solely responsible and for

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appointments made by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry to Employment Tribunals.

These changes will come into effect immediately.

I am placing in the Libraries of both Houses joint statements signed by myself and/or the Secretary of State and by the Lord Chief Justice covering the following fixed-term appointments to Tribunals: Lord Chancellor


    Part-time Chairmen of Employment Tribunals


    Part-time Chairmen and Deputy Chairmen of the Copyright Tribunal


    The "appointed person" to hear appeals under the Trade Marks Act 1994


    Reinstatement Committees and Umpires


    Part-time members of the Restrictive Practices Court


    Chairmen and ordinary members of the Reserved Forces Appeal Tribunals


    Part-time Chairmen of the Plant Varieties and Seeds Tribunal Lord Chancellor and the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry


    Part-time lay members of the Employment Appeal Tribunal Secretary State for Trade and Industry


    Part-time members of the Employment Tribunals

Unlawful Imprisonment

Lord Morris of Manchester asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many sentences of imprisonment by magistrates have been declared unlawful by the High Court since 1992 involving:


    (a) council tax default;


    (b) community charge default;


    (c) fines default; and


    (d) fathers in default of payments ordered by the Child Support Agency;

    and how many cases have been reviewed by the High Court in each category.[HL3420]

The Lord Chancellor: The information requested is not held centrally and could only be provided at a disproportionate cost.

Lord Morris of Manchester asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many applications for compensation for unlawful imprisonment have been made to the European Court of Human Rights involving:


    (a) council tax default;


    (b) community charge default;


    (c) fines default; and


    (d) fathers in default of payments ordered by the Child Support Agency.[HL3421]

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The Lord Chancellor: One hundred and thirty-eight applications in one or other of the categories specified at various times have been communicated to the Government of the United Kingdom for observations. The Government does not know how many other similar applications may have been made and rejected without communication, or may await consideration by the Court and may be communicated later. It is not possible to list the numbers for each category because not all applications contain the necessary information. But the majority, including the original case of this type Benham v UK, fall into category (b): community charge default.


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