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Whether the statue of the hunger strikers beside Kentucky Fried Chicken in Newry has planning permission; if so, when it was granted and to which organisation; and, if not, why it was not granted. [HL6379]
Whether the memorial to Sinn Fein/IRA hunger strikers at Fordcross, Crossmaglen, County Armagh has planning permission; if so, when it was granted and to which organisation; and, if not, why it was not granted; and [HL6378]
Whether the memorial to Burns and Morley, two bombers killed by their own bomb, in Crossmaglen, County Armagh, has planning permission; if so, when it was granted and to which organisation; and, if not, why it was not granted; and [HL6380]
How much time elapsed on average before financial compensation was awarded and received in respect of those killed by hostile action while on active service in the current conflict in Iraq for (a) dependants of Commonwealth service personnel serving in the British Armed Forces; and (b) dependants of British service personnel killed in the conflict. [HL6096]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Drayson): The information requested is not held centrally and can only be obtained by scrutiny of individual case files. A detailed examination of the 111 cases considered under the Armed Forces pension scheme and the 57 cases considered by the Veterans Agency is now being undertaken, and I will write separately to the noble Lord when this has been completed.
What steps they are taking to ensure that official and unofficial relations between the United Kingdom authorities and elected and unelected officials in Israel and Palestine remain balanced, symmetrical and fair. [HL6305]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): While we have no contact with Hamas, we engage with a wide range of Palestinians and Israelis on a regular basis through our embassy in Tel Aviv and our consulate general in Jerusalem. We also fund projects to engage with civil society and work with them towards achieving a just, two-state solution to the conflict and to alleviate humanitarian suffering.
22 Jun 2006 : Column WA103
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): Israel has denied responsibility for the deaths of seven Palestinians on 9 June. However, we remain concerned that Israel's response to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip should be proportional. We call on Israel to ensure that civilians, particularly children, are not harmed. My right honourable friend the Foreign Secretary discussed this matter with Israeli Foreign Minister Livni on 12 June. We also continue to call for an end to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip on Israeli targets and for calm in the Occupied Territories. We support President Abbas's efforts to restore order, using legally constituted security forces.
Whether they will make representations to the Government of Israel to make it possible for individual Palestinians to meet their Israeli counterparts in order to discuss peace issues, including in particular Mr Ziad Abu Zayyad. [HL6359]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): We continue to raise our concerns about freedom of movement issues with the Israeli Government. Restrictions on movement in the West Bank and at the crossing points between Gaza and Israel have increased in the past six months. We have no plans to raise Mr Ziad Abu Zayyad's case with the Israeli Government.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): We continue to call upon both parties to end the current cycle of violence which is having a negative impact on the peace process and costing innocent lives. We urge Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to take steps to improve the security situation and Israel to act with restraint in response to these attacks.
22 Jun 2006 : Column WA104
However, the DCMS intends to commission research this year to assess the take-up of new licences permitting live music performances in England and Wales. This research will provide a measure of the number of smaller venues that did not previously hold an entertainment licence and which have secured the authorisation to provide live music under the new system.
Lord Davies of Oldham: The Government's last assessment of the live music scene in England and Wales was made in 2004. This was based on findings from a survey by MORI, commissioned by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) that year, about live music performances in a wide range of smaller venues, including bars and restaurants, in the preceding 12 months. The survey findings are available on the DCMS website (www.culture.gov.uk), and copies were deposited in the Libraries of both Houses.
The DCMS intends to commission research this year to assess the take-up of new licences permitting live music performances in England and Wales. A repeat of the 2004 baseline study will take place in 2007, when the Licensing Act 2003 will have been fully operational for more than a year, to measure its impact on live music.
22 Jun 2006 : Column WA105
Further to the Written Answer by the Baroness Ashton of Upholland on 2 February (WA 723) concerning MMR/MR vaccine litigation, whether they will identify the three lead barristers who were paid £463,782, £445,601 and £424,659; what was the hourly rate of pay for each barrister; and whether these payments represent "risk rates" such that the service providers would be unlikely to profit from a case which was unsuccessful. [HL5883]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs (Baroness Ashton of Upholland): Final assessment for the advocates involved with this litigation have yet to be made by the courts. I will therefore write to the noble Earl with the information requested when the final payments have been settled and copies will be placed in the Library of the House.
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