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Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many teachers have (a) applied for and (b) gained excellent teacher status (i) since the programme started and (ii) in the academic year 2007-08. 
Jim Knight: Management information from the 'Excellent Teacher Scheme' show that 73 candidates have applied for Excellent Teacher Status since the scheme started in 2006, 60 of these candidates have qualified. 20 candidates applied for Teacher Status in the academic year 2007/08 and of these 18 have since qualified.
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The bonus scheme operated by the Department for International Development (DFID) for 2007-08 only applied to the senior civil service (SCS) and does not comprise separate bonus arrangements for SCS working in Iraq or Afghanistan.
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many Questions for written answer were tabled to his Department in Session (a) 2002-03, (b) 2003-04, (c) 2004-05,
(d) 2005-06, (e) 2006-07 and (f) 2007-08 to date; and how many were (i) answered substantively and (ii) not answered on grounds of disproportionate cost. 
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development (DFID) holds records of written questions asked of the Department since November 2004. Since this date DFID has received a total of 7,198 questions for written answer.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what development assistance the Government have provided to the Palestinian Territories in each of the last two financial years; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: In 2006-07 the Department for International Development (DFID) provided a total of £54 million to help the Palestinian people. Of this, £15 million was bilateral aid to the Occupied Palestinian Territories, £15 million was through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to help Palestinian refugees in the region, and £24 million was through our core funding for other multilateral organisations that provide overseas development assistance to the Palestinians.
In 2007-08 DFID provided £63.6 million in bilateral aid, including £15.6 million to UNRWA. Figures for our support to the Occupied Palestinian Territories through core funding for other multilateral organisations will be available in December.
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much has been spent on each project funded by the Stabilisation Aid Fund in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much his Department spent on each individual project which it has funded in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what percentage of development projects of each type undertaken in (a) Afghanistan and ( b) Iraq have been constructed to Sphere standards in each month of the last five years. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The complex environments present in Afghanistan and Iraq render difficult the application of Sphere standards. It is not possible to provide detailed information about the percentage of projects in Afghanistan and Iraq constructed to Sphere standards.
However, the principles enshrined within Sphere are used as guidelines by many international agencies in Iraq and Afghanistan, including the World Food Programme (WFP) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development (DFID) provided £200,000 in post-hurricane humanitarian relief, comprising £110,000 through the International Red Cross for the Turks and Caicos Red Cross Society to supply emergency shelter, sanitation and cooking equipment and general relief; and £90,000 to the Pan-American Health Organisation for emergency health and water systems.
The Royal Navy vessels Iron Duke and Wave Ruler, pre-positioned in the Caribbean, also provided swift logistical and manpower support and distributed DFID relief supplies carried on board for that purpose.
We have provided, and continue to offer, technical assistance to develop a longer-term recovery plan. The UK Government will provide financial assistance for recovery subject to discussions with the Turks and Caicos Government which are nearing conclusion.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what methodology his Department used to determine whether to provide financial aid to the Turks and Caicos Islands following Hurricane Ike; what role other Government departments had in the decision-making process; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development (DFID) has responsibility for providing humanitarian relief to the Turks and Caicos Islands as a UK overseas territory and because they needed post-hurricane humanitarian aid. We immediately deployed two humanitarian specialists, one from London and one based for that purpose in the Caribbean region, to make a first hand humanitarian assessment and to draw up a relief strategy in consultation with DFID headquarters in London and Barbados. The hurricane struck on 6 September and they deployed on 7 and 8 September. They worked with the Governor's office, the Turks and Caicos Ministry for Home Affairs, the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Co-ordination Team and the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency. We also co-ordinated closely with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Ministry of Defence and the Royal Navy. The humanitarian funding elements of our response were agreed on 10, 18 and 19 September.
Assistance for longer-term recovery has been considered jointly with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Governor's Office and the Turks and Caicos Government. These discussions are nearing conclusion.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what account he has taken of the independent socio-economic impact assessment prepared by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean on the damage on the Turks and Caicos Islands by Hurricane Ike in formulating his policy on the matter. 
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development, jointly with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, has considered the draft assessment prepared by the Commission. We have provided our comments to the TCI Financial Secretary for inclusion in its final report.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether reconstruction experts funded from the public purse have visited the Turks and Caicos Island since Hurricane Ike. 
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development financed the visit of a technical adviser from the Cayman Islands to assist the Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands in the preliminary recovery planning.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment he has made of the effect on the delivery of humanitarian aid in Zimbabwe of the decision by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe to suspend electronic banking facilities. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: Although there are few official restrictions on humanitarian access, the recent suspension by the reserve bank of electronic banking transfers, cash shortages, and a lack of clarity around the legality of operating in foreign currency has been hindering humanitarian delivery. For some NGOs, logistical constraints have meant that it has become difficult to deliver services outside urban areas.
The UN has recently succeeded in securing commitments by the Reserve Bank to allow electronic banking access for some NGOs again, as well as arrangements whereby humanitarian NGOs can operate in foreign currency. This should remove some of the obstacles to humanitarian delivery, but we will continue to monitor the situation very closely.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what representations he has made to (a) the Government of Zimbabwe, (b) donor countries and (c) the United Nations on allegations that money deposited by the Global Fund in the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has been misappropriated. 
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions he has had with (a) the World Bank, (b) the African Development Bank and (c) the IMF on the establishment of a currency board in Zimbabwe; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: Economic stabilisation, including currency reform, will be essential to recovery in Zimbabwe. If positive political change occurs and a new government embarks on a serious economic reform programme, it is expected that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will provide advice and support for stabilisation, with the backing of other financial institutions and donors. Establishing a currency board is one of the options likely to be under consideration for currency reform and halting inflation. The Department for International Development (DFID), the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and Her Majesty's Treasury (HMT) are working closely together to prepare for economic stabilisation and reform in Zimbabwe should the political situation allow and are in regular contact with (among others) the IMF, World Bank and Africa Development Bank on these matters.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information his Department has on the number of occasions on which a decision of the European Court of Justice has referred to provisions of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. 
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office does not maintain a database of all cases containing references to the Charter of Fundamental Rights. There are, however, relatively few cases in which the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has made substantive comments on the Charter of Fundamental Rights. In case C-540/03 European Parliament v Council of the EU, the ECJ reaffirmed that the Charter is a non-legally binding instrument. The ECJ has also made reference to the
Charter in the following cases of note: C-402/05P and C-415/05P Kadi, C-432/05 Unibet, C-303/05 Advocaten voor de Wereld, C-438/05 Viking Line, C-341/05 Laval, C-244/06 Dynamic Medien and C-450/06 Varec. All of these judgments confirm that the charter is not a source of rights but rather reflects existing rights, freedoms and principles that are already recognised in EU law or as they result from the international obligations and constitutional traditions common to the member states. The list of cases above is not comprehensive and does not, for example, include cases where a question on the charter may have been referred by a national court on which the ECJ did not need to adjudicate.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what (a) office space and (b) civil service support will be provided to the special representative for conflict resolution mechanisms; and what expenses the representative will be able to claim. 
Bill Rammell: My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister has asked Jack McConnell MSP to become his Special Representative for Conflict Resolution Mechanisms. Mr. McConnell will be based in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), working with the FCO, the Department for International Development (DFID) and the Ministry of Defence (MOD).
Mr. McConnell has been allocated an office in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, which will provide a base. Staff in the FCO, MOD and DFID working on conflict issues will provide support. His travel and any other out of pocket expenses related to this role will be covered by the Departments concerned.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what plans there are for a Security Council resolution in response to the crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; and if he will make a statement. 
David Miliband: The UN Security Council has followed developments in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) closely since the upsurge in violence in October, and will continue to work with the UN Secretary General and others to reach a political solution to the region's problems. While there are no current plans for a Security Council Resolution, the Council has discussed the situation in the eastern DRC on a number of occasions, most recently on 11 November. It also issued a presidential statement on the situation in the DRC on 29 October. The UN Secretary General appointed former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo as his Special Envoy to the DRC on 3 November.
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what sanctions are available in cases of departmental staff found to
have committed disciplinary offences; and how many times each has been used in each of the last three years. 
(a) a formal reprimand with a final warning
(b) a ban on consideration for promotion or progression, including temporary promotion or progression, for up to three years
(c) downgrading and/or a transfer to other duties
(d) suspension without pay for a specified period
(e) stoppage of pay increases for up to three years
(f) ban on overseas posting, including temporary assignments unless/until the officer is no longer considered a risk
(g) a written warning or a final written warning
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