Mr. Thorne : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer of 9 February, how, following the introduction of the national curriculum in service children's schools, he will seek to minimise the disruption to children's education on military posting.
Mr. Neubert : The introduction of the national curriculum will in itself help reduce such disruption. In order to avoid possible difficulties associated with the syllabi of different examining groups, the joint council for GCSE has set up a working party to agree upon common procedural guidelines for the transfer of course work. My Department is represented on this working party.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list how many aircraft and by type were employed during exercise Red Lanyard ; how many service personnel were engaged ; what types of other ancillary equipment were employed ; what were the locations of bases and the area covered ; what is the projected estimated cost to public funds ; and what were the aims and objectives of the exercise.
Mr. Neubert : Exercise Red Lanyard was designed to rehearse the procedures that the services would use should they be called upon to assist in the safe evacuation of British subjects from a trouble spot overseas. A maximum of 15 C130 Hercules aircraft were employed, with two Chinook and one Puma helicopters. Up to 750 Army and 180 RAF personnel were involved at any one time. Ancillary equipment employed included Landrovers, associated trailers, Fox and Scorpion armoured vehicles and guns. The exercise proper took place on the Standford training area in Norfolk ; the C130 Hercules aircraft used RAF airfields at Lyneham and Watton. This execise was not costed separately and it is not possible to derive the financial information requested except at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what are the implications for his policy on nuclear modernisation in the light of General John Galvin's announcement that the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is prepared to scrap up to 1,000 artillery shells, provided member countries agree to modernise other nuclear armaments ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Archie Hamilton : I am not aware of any such announcement by Saceur. However, the Government continue to believe that it is essential that we maintain an up-to-date stockpile. NATO's nuclear stockpile in Europe
Column 254is today at its lowest level for 20 years, having reduced by some 35 per cent. since 1979. Any further reductions will be welcome provided we retain a fully effective, reliable and survivable deterrent.
Mr. Sean Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what is his policy, in the event of the breakdown of nuclear deterrence, towards North Atlantic Treaty Organisation initiating the use of tactical nuclear weapons ;
(2) if he will define the Government's understanding of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation's doctrine of flexible response ; (3) whether, in the event of the breakdown of nuclear deterrence, the use of tactical nuclear weapons is an option which the Government might take ;
(4) whether, in the event of the breakdown of nuclear deterrence, limited nuclear war is a possibility under the strategy of flexible response.
Mr. Shore : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many dual capable LRINF and SRINF aircraft were in service with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the Warsaw pact in 1985 and at the latest available date ; and how many of these aircraft are equipped with air-to-surface missiles.
|1985 |End 1988 ------------------------------------------------ |LRINF NATO |150 |140 Warsaw pact |350 |300 |SRINF NATO |1,300 (600)|1,500 (650) Warsaw pact |3,800 |3,250
These figures cover land based aircraft deployed in Europe west of the Urals and exclude French aircraft and those with a primary maritime role. The figures in brackets show NATO aircraft certified for nuclear use. Comparable figures are not available for the Warsaw pact.
The majority of Warsaw pact dual-capable aircraft in these ranges are capable of carrying air-to-surface missiles armed with conventional or nuclear warheads. Some of these missiles have ranges of up to several hundred kilometres. None of the NATO aircraft is currently equipped with air-to-surface missiles armed with nuclear warheads.
Mr. Sean Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when was the last time that service personnel fired shots on the British mainland in the course of their duty when they were not involved in training exercises, previous to the Tern hill incident.
Mr. Neubert : To the best of our knowledge the last time prior to the Tern hill incident that service personnel fired shots on the British mainland in the course of their duty and when they were not involved in training exercises was in support of the police in the Iranian embassy siege in May 1980.
Mr. Neubert : I refer the hon. Gentleman to the reply that my hon. Friend the Member for Epsom and Ewell (Mr. Hamilton) gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Walthamstow (Mr. Summerson) on 10 January 1989 at columns 677-78.
No claims are outstanding or expected from Balfour Kilpatrick. The PSA has no contract with this company. It is subcontractor to Haden Young, which is the main contractor for the mechanical and electrical engineering works services on the A90 project. The contract was substantially completed in March 1988. Negotiations on the final account for the contract are proceeding. Haden Young has submitted a claim which is under consideration in accordance with the conditions of contract. The amounts and grounds of the claim are a matter of commercial confidence.
Column 256Department and Balfour Kilpatrick on the financial position of the company and its impact on its ability to fulfil the A90 contract.
The answer is none.
Mr. Campbell-Savours : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether any assessment has been made of the quality of materials supplied by Messrs Hargreaves of Bury for the A90 project as against the original specifications.
All materials supplied by Messrs Hargreaves of Bury have been inspected in accordance with the contract specification. Certain duct flange welds have failed to meet the specified requirements and options for overcoming this problem in the most economical way are under discussion with the Ministry of Defence.
A broad estimate of the cost of mechanical and electrical work which has been rendered abortive by changes of requirement during the course of the contract is £1 million.
(2) if he will make a statement on the management by Haden Young of the A90 project ;
(3) what assessment he has made of the achievements of Balfour Kilpatrick in ensuring the speediest possible achievement of targets in the A90 construction project ;
(4) if he will carry out an assessment of all contracts awarded by his Department to Balfour Kilpatrick in the past five years.
The financial position and performance of all companies working or likely to be engaged on work for PSA are kept regularly under review and appropriate action taken where necessary. Findings concerning specific firms are a matter of commercial confidence.
Mr. Campbell-Savours : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will investigate disputes in the A90 construction project between the main contractors and Balfour Kilpatrick ; and if he will make a statement.
Any disputes which may exist between Haden Young and Balfour Kilpatrick are a matter for them.
Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether his Department has received any invitation to send delegates or observers to the conference "Pathways to International Security" at the Royal Society of Medicine, London, on 18 March, organised by Professions for World Disarmament and Development.
Ms. Lestor : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much has been set aside by the European development fund for each year since 1984, to be spent on the Falklands ; and how much has been spent.
Mr. Chris Patten : The Falkland Islands receive an allocation of aid under each five year European development fund (EDF). Under EDF V, this was 0.05 mecu for 1980-85. This has been fully committed but not yet spent. Under EDF VI, 1.1 mecu were allocated for 1985-90. Commitments have yet to be made. In addition the Falkland Islands were allotted 0.067 mecu in 1988 for a shortfall of export earnings from sheep's or lamb's wool.
Mr. Cran : To ask the Attorney-General what plans he has to implement the recommendations of the 1981 Law Commission report on breach of confidence affecting the disclosure of information obtained by improper means.
The Attorney-General : The Law Commission's report No. 110, Cmnd. 8388, amounts for the most part to a recommendation for a restatement of the common law of breach of confidence and the Government do not propose, particularly in the light of recent judgments which restate that law, to give its implementation high priority at present.
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Attorney-General if he will make it his policy to give his consent under section 2(2) of the Public Order Act 1936 to any prosecution of members of the organisation known as the Guardian Angels under section 2(1)(a) of that Act, for usurping the functions of the police.
Mr. Attorney-General : No. It will remain my policy to give consent under section 2(2) of the Public Order Act 1936, and any policy as regards consents generally, only in cases where the evidence is sufficient to justify the conclusion that there is a reasonable prospect of a conviction and the public interest requires a prosecution.
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Attorney-General whether the Crown prosecution service is considering any prosecutions of members of the organisation known as the Guardian Angels under sections 4 or 5 of the Public Order Act 1986.
Mr. Conway : To ask the Attorney-General if he will state, for the past three years, the number of applicants to the High Court under section 245 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, seeking review of the decisions of the Secretary of State for the Environment.
The Attorney-General : For the financial years 1985-86, 1986-87 and 1987-88 there were respectively 114, 137 and 154 applications to the High Court under section 245 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971.
Mr. John Patten : In 1987 the average clear up rate for sexual offences was 75 per cent. compared with 71 per cent. in 1986. The figure for 1988 is not yet available. The police give a high priority to the detection and apprehension of sexual offenders.
Mr. John Patten : My right hon. Friend last met the chief charity commissioner on Wednesday 22 February to discuss the proposals that the Government will be putting forward in the forthcoming White Paper on charities.
15. Mr. John Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement about the number of local authorities who made no prosecutions for breaches of the Sunday trading law in 1988.
Mr. Renton : Information about the number of local authorities which made no prosecutions for breaches of the Sunday trading law is not held centrally. Decisions on whether or not to prosecute in any given case are a matter for the local authorities concerned.
Mr. Renton : Since I last answered a question on this subject, from the hon. Member for Normanton (Mr. O'Brien) on 2 February 1989 at column 415 , we have received 133 written representations broadly in favour of Sunday trading and 155 against.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : It is primarily the responsibility of chief officers of police and local police authorities, to ensure that their resources are used to best effect. Value for money has been improved in the Cambridgeshire constabulary by streamlining administrative procedures, devolving operational management responsibility to sub-divisional level, and establishing civilian administrative units in the sub-divisions.
recommendations of the Audit Commission on police efficiency.
47. Mr. Galbraith : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he next expects to meet Ministers from other Governments in the European Economic Community to discuss the movement of persons within the European Economic Community after 1992.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : Miss Richardson has received appropriate medical treatment under the care of the medical staff at Her Majesty's prison Styal. Specific clinical information pertaining to individual prisoners is confidential and is not normally disclosed.
20. Mr. Sedgemore : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many cases have been referred to the Court of Appeal in exercising of the power under section 17(1) of the Criminal Appeal Act 1968, since 1968 ; and what was the outcome in each case.
Mr. John Patten : Between 1 September 1968, when the Criminal Appeal Act 1968 came into force, and 31 December 1988, 105 defendants had their convictions referred to the Court of Appeal under section 17(1)(a) of the Act. The appeals of 57 defendants were allowed, 40 were dismissed, four were abandoned and one retrial was ordered. The cases of three defendants have yet to be determined.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : The last meeting of the ministerial group on the misuse of drugs, which I chair, took place on 9 February. Issues discussed included Customs' provisional drug seizure figures for 1988, plans for regionally-based anti-drug publicity campaigns, the development of drug misuse services in 1989-90 and evaluation of pilot syringe exchange schemes.
Mr. Hurd : I refer my hon. Friend to the answer that I gave on 2 February to a similar question from my hon. Friend the Member for Rugby and Kenilworth (Mr. Pawsey) at column 419. Since then, I have taken part in useful discussions about co-operation against illicit drug trafficking, among other matters, with my counterparts in the Federal Republic of Germany and in France.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : The Government have developed a comprehensive and balanced strategy aimed at tackling all aspects of the drugs problem ; it is overseen by the ministerial group on the misuse of drugs.