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What consideration has been given to the recommendation of the Select Committee on the Constitution (12th Report, 200304, HL150) that the two Houses establish a Joint Committee on regulation. [HL595]
The Chairman of Committees (Lord Brabazon of Tara): The establishment of a Joint Committee is not a matter for this House alone. The first step is for the Liaison Committee to consider whether it agrees with the proposal in principle. If the Liaison Committee does wish to establish a Joint Committee, negotiations with the Commons would then proceed.
Since the publication of the report, I have been in correspondence on this matter with the chairman of the Select Committee on the Constitution. As I have already notified him, he will be invited to attend the Liaison Committee to support the proposal when it next meets, which is expected to be shortly before the Summer Recess.
What priority they will give to generating support for an International Arms Trade Treaty with the aim of alleviating suffering in Africa and other conflict-stricken parts of the world, during the forthcoming G8 heads of state meeting. [HL456]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): One of the Government's main priorities for the G8 2005 summit attended by heads of state and government are to agree a comprehensive plan to address the complex problems within Africa. To be successful, this must include measures that will help build peace and create security across the continent. The Government believe that a legally binding international treaty covering the trade in conventional weapons would be an important step in tackling the problems caused by irresponsible proliferation of arms. We will raise this issue in discussions with our G8 partners including at the meeting of G8 Foreign Ministers taking place on 23 June.
Lord Triesman: In accordance with Article 53 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), the contracting states undertake to abide by the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). The European Commission's 2004 regular report on Turkey's progress towards accession notes that Turkey has made increased efforts since 2002 to comply with the decisions of the ECtHR. Following the ECtHR ruling that the trial of Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Ocalan had not been fair, the Turkish Government confirmed that in this case too, Turkey would comply with the ECtHR judgment, and would reopen the case file to see whether the ECHR violations could have affected the verdict. The Turkish Foreign Minister indicated that any re-examination of the case would be conducted in a manner acceptable to the Committee of Ministers, whose role it is to oversee the implementation of court judgments, and who will consider the case in July. We will continue to follow developments.
What has been their response to the advice from the National Infrastructure Security Co-ordination Centre that agencies involved in the critical national infrastructure should stop using Microsoft Internet Explorer because of its security weaknesses. [HL352]
Further to the Written Answer by the Baroness Scotland of Asthal on 7 June (WA 50), how many students on the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme failed to return to their country of origin for each of the years 2000 to 2004. [HL445]
Baroness Scotland of Asthal: Information is only available for 2004 in relation to SAWS students who left their employment before they were expected to or about whom employers had doubts as to whether they would leave the UK. Of a total of 22,901 SAWS work cards issued, 154 students fell into this category.
20 Jun 2005 : Column WA147
Further to the Written Answer by the Minister of State for the Armed Forces, Mr Alan Ingram, on 26 May 2004 (Official Report, Commons, 1696W), how many prisoners were (a) held by the United Kingdom forces; (b) brought into United Kingdom custody; and (c) transferred to United States custody, each week from 1 December 2003 to 28 June 2004 [HL253]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Drayson): Prior to December 2003, all persons taken into custody by United Kingdom forces were held by the US at Camp Bucca, in southern Iraq. During December those internees were transferred to the UK's divisional temporary detention facility (DTDF) at Shaibah logistics base in southern Iraq, and the figures given from January onwards refer to internees held at that location. However, during December, internees taken into custody by the UK may have spent a short period in Camp Bucca prior to transfer to the DTDF on or around 18 December 2003. From the end of December 2003 to 28 June 2004, no internees were transferred to US custody.
Custody by UK
|As at 1 Dec 2003||109 (in US Custody)||-|
|Week ending 8 Dec 2003||111 (in US Custody)||14|
|Week ending 15 Dec 2003||110 (in US Custody)||14|
|Week ending 22 Dec 2003||112||2|
|Week ending 27 Dec 2003||140||41|
|Week ending 5 Jan 2004||135||11|
|Week ending 12 Jan 2004||126||1|
|Week ending 19 Jan 2004||124||2|
|Week ending 26 Jan 2004||109||5|
|Week ending 2 Feb 2004||106||15|
|Week ending 9 Feb 2004||105||1|
|Week ending 16 Feb 2004||103||5|
|Week ending 23 Feb 2004||108||9|
|Week ending 1 Mar 2004||95||4|
|Week ending 8 Mar 2004||93||0|
|Week ending 15 Mar 2004||84||4|
|Week ending 22 Mar 2004||81||3|
|Week ending 29 Mar 2004||79||2|
|Week ending 5 Apr 2004||82||5|
|Week ending 13 Apr 2004||102||22|
|Week ending 19 Apr 2004||101||0|
|Week ending 25 Apr 2004||98||7|
|Week ending 2 May 2004||118||27|
|Week ending 9 May 2004||117||3|
|Week ending 16 May 2004||135||23|
|Week ending 23 May 2004||125||8|
|Week ending 30 May 2004||107||5|
|Week ending 7 June 2004||79||0|
|Week ending 14 June 2004||68||14|
|Week ending 20 June 2004||73||10|
|Week ending 28 June 2004||55||1|
Whether they foresee adverse consequences for United Kingdom-based defence companies in the Defense Bill now before the United States Congress; and what steps they are taking to encourage a balanced view on these issues on the part of Members of Congress. [HL325]
Lord Drayson: It is vital that the Armed Forces of the United Kingdom and United States operate effectively together. This can only happen if UK and US defence industries can continue to work closely together.
We are concerned at any proposals for protectionist provisions that would damage this important relationship. As we have done previously we will continue to work with the US Administration to counter protectionism and welcome the recent statement from the White House. We will continue to make the Government's views known to Members of Congress.
How many inquests remain to be heard in relation to members of Her Majesty's Armed Forces who lost their lives as a result of the 199091 Gulf War and military duties in Iraq since 2003; and what are the reasons for the delays. [HL446]
Lord Drayson: No inquests remain to be heard resulting from the 199091 Gulf War. We understand that 77 remain outstanding since 2003. All investigations into deaths abroad take time to resolve; deaths in operational situations take proportionally longer. Delays have also arisen from pressure on the Oxfordshire coroner, since all bodies are repatriated to RAF Brize Norton.
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