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Secretary-General of the United Nations the present position in Cyprus ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Maude : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs has not yet discussed the Cyprus question with the United Nations Secretary-General. My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister did so on 8 November. Officials are in frequent touch with the Secretary- General in connection with the Cyprus good offices mission, which we fully support.
68. Mr. Geraint Howells : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether he will raise with the Soviet authorities the case of George Belitsky who is unable to apply for an exit visa until 2010.
Mr. Waldegrave : We have raised the case of George Belitsky on numerous occasions, most recently when my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs met Mr. Shevardnadze in London on 19 December. The case was also raised at senior official level during Anglo-Soviet talks on human rights held in Moscow on 9 January. We shall continue to press the Soviet authorities until there is a satisfactory outcome.
69. Mr. Parry : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the progress of international efforts to secure an urgent peaceful settlement in the Cambodian conflict.
Column 696set of principles to guide them in working for a resolution of the Cambodia problem, including an enhanced role for the United Nations. A further meeting is planned in New York in the first half of February.
Mr. Waldegrave : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs last discussed Cambodia with Secretary of State Baker on 11 December 1989. They discussed the problem of Vietnamese boat people in Hong Kong on 29 January 1990.
70. Mr. Skinner : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent meetings he has had with other European Economic Community Foreign Ministers to discuss relations with Third world countries ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Maude : Relations with developing countries and regions are regularly discussed both within the Council and in political co-operation. The European Council of 8-9 December issued statements on the middle east, Lebanon, the Euro-Arab conference, Southern Africa, Ethiopia, Chile and Central America. A new Lome convention providing for comprehensive trade, aid and co-operation was agreed in December between the EC and 68 developing countries in Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific.
Mr. Maude : I refer the hon. Member to the reply given on 14 November 1989 by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs to the hon. Member for Liverpool, Riverside (Mr. Parry).
Mr. Maude : According to the December 1980 census the population of the Falkland Islands was then 1,813. The figure for the next census, in December 1986, was 1,947. We do not know precisely what the population was in 1982, but local estimates place it at around 1,700. The estimated current population is about 2,050.
Column 697Mr. Maude : We have a regular dialogue with the Government of Sri Lanka on a wide range of matters. These have in the last few months included a number of representations on human rights issues.
74. Mr. Knox : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what further proposals he intends to place before his European Community partners for the development of Community policies.
75. Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made by his Department since December to the Vietnamese Government concerning the potential of further emigration from north Vietnam to Hong Kong when the South China sea sailing season commences.
Mr. Maude : Her Majesty's embassy in Hanoi is in regular contact with the Vietnamese Government over aspects of the boat people problem, in particular the possibility of further large-scale emigration during the forthcoming sailing season. Under the terms of the comprehensive plan of action agreed in Geneva last June, the Vietnamese authorities are obliged to take measures to deter people from leaving clandestinely and to encourage those who wish to leave to do so through the orderly departure programme.
77. Mr. Cartwright : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps the Government are taking to encourage the moves towards democracy amongst the member nations of the Warsaw pact.
Mr. Maude : We are actively considering ways in which we can help the countries of eastern Europe in this field. Groups of Hungarian and Polish politicians have already participated in successful seminars on the United Kingdom parliamentary system organised by the Great Britain/East Europe Centre. Budding politicians from Bulgaria, Romania, Czechoslovakia and the GDR will attend similar seminars in the coming months to look at our political and parliamentary system in order to help them organise their parties and electoral campaigns.
In addition, the IPU is sending factfinding missions to these four countries to determine how the IPU could be of assistance in the parliamentary field.
Mr. Waldegrave : I refer my hon. Friend to the reply given by my hon. Friend the Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs to my hon. Friend the Member for Bolton, North-East (Mr. Thurnham) on 1 February.
Mr. Maude : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs visited Bonn on 6 February to give a speech to the Konrad Adenauer Foundation. He met Chancellor Kohl, Herr Genscher and Herr Ru"he, for a broad range of discussions on topics of current interest. He visited East Berlin and the GDR from 22-24 January, and I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Bolton, North- East (Mr. Thurnham) on 1 February.
Mr. Osman is the subject of an extradition request from Hong Kong and has been committed for return there. The delay in his return reflects both the complexity of the case and the series of appeals which Mr. Osman has made against his extradition, since the law provides that a fugitive cannot be surrendered while proceedings on such appeals are pending. The sequence of events demonstrates how it is Mr. Osman's own use of the appeal channels open to him which has led to his substantial period in prison :
6 December 1985
Mr. Osman arrested on provisional extradition warrant.
7 December 1985
Mr. Osman remanded in custody.
24 January 1986
Home Office issued authority to Bow street magistrates to proceed with extradition case under Fugitive Offenders Act 1967, in respect of an arrest warrant issued in Hong Kong on 20 January 1986. 25 April 1986
Further warrant of arrest issued in Hong Kong in respect of 43 offences.
13 May 1986
Second authority to proceed issued superseding the authority to proceed of 24 January 1986.
27 May 1986
Committal proceedings began at Bow street.
1 June 1987
Bow street magistrates committed Mr. Osman to await the Home Secretary's order for surrender to Hong Kong.
9 June 1987
Application by Mr. Osman for writ of habeas corpus to have the magistrate's decision set aside.
30 June 1987
Complaint to European Commission of Human Rights.
30 March 1988
After four weeks hearing Divisional Court dismissed application for writ of habeas corpus.
29 April 1988
Divisional Court refused leave to appeal to House of Lords.
Column 69913 May 1988
Mr. Osman petitioned House of Lords direct for leave to appeal and made second application for writ of habeas corpus on grounds of diplomatic immunity.
14 July 1988
Petition to House of Lords rejected.
21 October 1988
Divisional Court hearing of second application for writ of habeas corpus.
21 December 1988
Divisional Court dismissed second application for writ of habeas corpus.
14 February 1989
Divisional Court refused leave to appeal to the House of Lords. 24 February 1989
Mr. Osman petitioned House of Lords direct for leave to appeal. 13 March 1989
European Commission declared inadmissible Mr. Osman's complaint under the European Convention on Human Rights.
4 May 1989
Court of Appeal, Hong Kong, quashed the arrest warrant issued in Hong Kong on 30 November 1985, on the ground that it had been vitiated by bias.
9 May 1989
Mr. Osman's solicitors sought adjournment of their petition for leave to appeal to the House of Lords and gave notice of their intention to make a third application for habeas corpus because of the quashing in Hong Kong of the warrant of 30 November 1985, and the issue of a diplomatic note by the Liberian Ambassador relating to Mr. Osman's claim of diplomatic immunity.
6 June 1989
The High Court granted leave to apply for a third writ of habeas corpus.
26 July 1989
The Divisional Court refused Mr. Osman's application for bail. 26 September 1989
Application for judicial review deferred to start of habeas corpus proceedings which were due in the Divisional Court on 3 October. 4 October 1989
Judicial review proceedings began, to be followed by habeas corpus proceedings on the question of what constituted "relevant offences" for the purposes of Mr. Osman's extradition.
5 October 1989
Application for independent inquiry refused. Application for bail refused. Case adjourned to 19 October.
26 October 1989
The Divisional Court adjourned for judgment on both judicial review and habeas corpus proceedings.
17 November 1989
The Divisional Court dismissed Mr. Osman's applications for judicial review and habeas corpus. The Court decided that Mr. Osman had been lawfully arrested and there had been no dishonesty or abuse of process. It also decided that all of the charges faced by Mr. Osman were relevant offences for the purposes of extradition, although it was agreed that a phrase objected to in the wording of one charge would be deleted.
5 December 1989
The Divisional Court refused leave to appeal to the House of Lords.
15 December 1989
Mr. Osman lodged a further petition for leave to appeal to the House of Lords direct, against the Divisional Court's judgment on the third habeas corpus application.
1 February 1990
Mr. Osman's outstanding petitions for leave to appeal to the House of Lords were refused by the House of Lords Appeal Committee. 2 February 1990
Mr. Osman lodged his fourth habeas corpus application.
Mr. Osman cannot be surrendered to the Hong Kong authorities until this further application has been heard.
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement concerning his Department's policies to encourage the appointment of more women to senior diplomatic posts.
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Leicester, East of 12 January, Official Report, column 794, where the five women ambassadors and high commissioners are posted ; and how long they have been in post.