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Mr. Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the implications of the International Criminal Court for British soldiers and citizens. 
Mr. MacShane: The purpose of the International Criminal Court (ICC) is to ensure that the most serious crimes of international concerngenocide, war crimes and crimes against humanitydo not go unpunished. The Rome Statute establishing the Court is based on the principle of complementarity: the ICC only steps in where states are unwilling or unable genuinely to investigate or prosecute. The crimes covered by the ICC have been incorporated into UK law. Since the United Kingdom would investigate any serious allegations, it is inconceivable that the ICC would assume jurisdiction.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to encourage the United States to accept the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court. 
Mr. MacShane: We are in regular contact with the US Administration in respect of this issue. Officials have made several approaches, both bilaterally and in conjunction with EU partners, encouraging the US to ratify the Rome statute. And we have repeatedly made clear that, while we understand US concerns that the court might bring malicious or politically-motivated charges against US personnel, we do not share them, since the statute contains safeguards against this.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on his policy towards the European Commission document on a Strategy of Information and Communication for the European Union; and what measures he will undertake to ensure impartiality in such information campaigns. 
Peter Hain: We welcome the Commission's document, which is a useful analysis of efforts so far by European Union institutions and member states to explain the European Union's work to the people of the European Union. It includes recommendations on how the institutions could do that job better, in partnership with member states.
The Government fully support the aim of explaining the practical benefits of British membership of the European Union to our citizens, in a straightforward and factual way. We look forward to working with our European partners to do just that.
Dr. Vis: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to Presidency Conclusions of the Seville European Summit, Annex II, Section E, what plans the Government have for
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(a) providing public facilities for viewing and listening to Council deliberations on legislation adopted by the co-decision procedure with the European Parliament (i) in London, (ii) in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and (iii) in major towns and cities in England, (b) publicising such facilities and the dates and times of the relevant Council meetings and (c) ensuring that access to such premises will be free of charge. 
Peter Hain: The detailed arrangements for greater Council transparency, agreed at Seville, are still under discussion. It is clearly too early to judge the likely extent of media take-up of Council proceedings. But the Government remain committed to the principle that the work of the European Council should be accessible to the widest possible European public.
Mr. Borrow: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when the latest phase of the feasibility study into resettling the outer islands of the Chagos Archipelago will be completed. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: We have now received Phase 2B of the consultants report on whether it would be feasible for the Chagossians to return and live on the outer islands of the British Indian Ocean Territory (the Chagos archipelago). Copies of the report will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses. We are also sending copies to the Government of Mauritius and the Chagossians' lawyers in the United Kingdom.
Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when the Government will submit its first report on implementation of the Council of Europe Charter for regional or minority languages. 
Mr. MacShane: I am pleased to announce that the report was submitted to the Council of Europe on 1 July. The report details the measures taken by the Government and the devolved Administrations to fulfil the UK's obligations under the Charter for Welsh, Scottish Gaelic, Irish, Scots and Ulster-Scots. Copies of the report have been placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Ancram: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations, and when, his Department has made to the Governments of (a) Afghanistan, (b) the Bahamas, (c) Bolivia, (d) Brazil, (e) Burma, (f) Cambodia, (g) China, (h) Colombia, (i) Dominican Republic, (j) Ecuador, (k) Guatemala, (l) Haiti, (m) Hong Kong, (n) India, (o) Jamaica, (p) Laos, (q) Mexico, (r) Nigeria, (s) Pakistan, (t) Panama, (u) Paraguay, (v) Peru, (w) Taiwan, (x) Thailand, (y) Venezuela and (z) Vietnam, concerning the trafficking of illegal drugs to the United Kingdom through their territories; and if he will make a statement. 
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Mr. Straw: We are in regular dialogue with the Governments of countries where Class A drugs are produced or trafficked. Our strategy has been to build local law enforcement capability to interdict the supply of drugs destined for the UK as close to its source as possible.
In Afghanistan, which is the source of 90 per cent. of the heroin found on the UK's streets, we are co-ordinating international anti-narcotics assistance. By working with international partners and agencies we aim to eliminate opium poppy, build institutions, increase law enforcement capacity, assist the creation of alternative livelihoods and address growing drug demand. The UK also provides anti-drugs assistance, in the form of training and equipment, to Afghanistan's neighbours and other countries on the heroin supply route to the UK.
We also have regular contact with the Governments of Colombia, Peru and Bolivia, who together produce virtually all of the world's cocaine. We are providing training and equipment for local law enforcement agencies in all three states to assist their respective Governments to tackle the problem. We are also active in supporting projects to build local capability in other South American countries through which drugs are trafficked. The Caribbean, through which much of the cocaine trafficked to the UK is transshipped, has also been the focus for much of our assistance, both bilaterally, and through multi-lateral fora.
Mr. Ancram: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the Government's understanding of the meaning of the phrase "political union" in the Laeken declaration; and if he will cite the previous occurrences of that phrase in documents agreed by the European Council. 
Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action the Government have taken to ensure that the recommendations of the National Reconciliation Forum in Côte d'Ivoire have been implemented, including the granting of nationality to Alassane Ouattara; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Straw: The UK followed closely the National Reconciliation Forum in Côte d'Ivoire. The Minister for Africa, my noble Friend Baroness Amos, sent a message to the President of the Forum, welcoming its conclusions.
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Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action the Government have taken to ensure that the election process in Côte d'Ivoire prior to the local elections on 7 July has been fair and free for all parties concerned, with special regard to the distribution of identity cards required for voter registration; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Straw: Officials from our embassy in Abidjan have participated, along with our European partners, in several meetings with the CEI (Independent Electoral Commission) and made representations to the Ivorian Government to emphasise our concerns that the elections should be free, fair and inclusive.
Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the recent tensions between Government supporters and opposition party supporters in Daloa, Côte D'Ivoire. 
Mr. Straw: A state of emergency has been announced and Daloa placed under curfew until 15 July. The Ivorian Minister of the Interior, Boga Doudou, accompanied by the head of the armed forces, General Doue, visited Daloa on 26 June for talks with local political and community leaders in an attempt to defuse the situation further.
Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many opposition supporters he estimates were killed during the clashes between Government supporters and opposition party supporters in Daloa, Côte d'Ivoire. 
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