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Military Technology Sales

Mr. Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list the number of items of British manufactured technology found by United Nations Special Commission inspectors at Iraqi sites used for the preparation or manufacture

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of (a) chemical, (b) biological and (c) nuclear weapons of mass destruction; and if he will place in the Library the most recent UNSCOM report to the UN Security Council. [28169]

Mr. Tony Lloyd: British manufactured equipment has been found at a number of sites inspected by UNSCOM and the IAEA. Any evidence of wrongdoing is investigated and, if appropriate, will be a matter for the courts.

A copy of UNSCOM's most recent (October) Report to the Security Council is already held by the Libraries of the House.

Algeria

Mr. Gareth Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action the UK Government are taking to bring to the attention of the Algerian Government their responsibilities to protect the lives of civilians. [27993]

Mr. Fatchett: I led the EU Troika Mission to Algiers from 19-20 January 1998. We had talks with the Foreign Minister and the Prime Minister. As part of the EU political dialogue with Algeria, we raised with them the need to provide adequate protection for their citizens. We believe that it is important that this dialogue should continue.

Mr. Gareth Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to expedite action by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial killings in Algeria. [27994]

Mr. Fatchett: During the EU Troika Mission to Algiers from 19-20 January 1998, I and my Troika colleagues urged the Algerian Government to agree to a visit by the UN Special Rapporteurs. The Algerians stated that they are not ready to do so. We will continue to press them to issue an invitation as soon as possible.

Mr. Gareth Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the policy of the Government in relation to the future progress of the EU-Algeria Partnership Agreement with particular reference to Algeria's commitments under the humans rights clause in that agreement. [27992]

Mr. Fatchett: The EU/Algeria Association Agreement currently under negotiation will contain a human rights clause committing both parties to respect human rights and democratic principles. We support progress in negotiating the agreement, which will provide for political dialogue on a range of issues, including human rights, once it enters into force.

Civil Servants

Mr. Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many black and Asian persons have been recruited to the Foreign Office since 1 May 1997. [27949]

Mr. Tony Lloyd: FCO staff are not obliged to report their ethnic origins. According to the ongoing voluntary and confidential survey, the FCO has received returns from 13 Black or Asian people who joined the office since 1 May 1997. We know that many new entrants have not yet returned their forms. Irrespective of the actual

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numbers, the FCO is committed to increasing the representation of minority ethnic, and other under-represented, groups.

Arms Sales

Dr. Tony Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what structures for parliamentary scrutiny and accountability in member states are contained in the UK proposals for an EU code of conduct on arms sales. [28175]

Mr. Tony Lloyd: Our proposals develop the EU's 8 Common Criteria agreed in 1991 and 1992, using language in the UK's national criteria announced by my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary on 28 July 1997. Neither set of criteria includes structures for parliamentary scrutiny and accountability and we are not proposing such structures in the Code of Conduct. The role of national parliaments in the export licensing process is a matter for Member States. At a national level, we are committed to reporting annually to Parliament on the application of strategic export controls in order to ensure transparency and accountability.

Environmental Policy Co-ordination

Mr. Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the outcome of the meeting he attended in January in Latvia with heads of European Governments on environmental policy co-ordination. [28203]

Mr. Doug Henderson: The Summit of the Council of Baltic Sea States took place in Riga on 22-23 January. The Deputy Prime Minister represented the UK as Presidency of the EU. The Summit discussed regional co-operation; enlargement of the EU; democracy and human rights; economic co-operation; investment; transport; energy; environment and sustainable development, including the outcome of the Kyoto Summit; information technology; and higher education.

On the environment, the Summit supported ongoing work on sustainable development in the Baltic Sea region; reaffirmed its commitment to removal of pollution from the Baltic Sea and endorsed a strategy for improving reception facilities for ship-generated waste; and welcomed assistance from the European Union in combating pollution.

Iraq

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of potential damage to (a) Karbala, (b) Najaf and (c) the Ziggarat at Ur in the selection of potential targets for military strikes on Iraq. [28617]

Mr. Fatchett: It is not sensible to speculate on potential military targets at a time when we are still actively pursuing a diplomatic solution to the crisis with Iraq.

Publications

Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list by title the publications produced by his Department between 1 May 1997 and 31 January 1998. [26327]

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Mr. Fatchett: Information Department of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office produces a range of publications designed to project Britain and British Government policies overseas, and present Britain's viewpoint on subjects of particular interest or significance to an international audience.

127 such publications were produced during the period 1 May 1997 to 31 January 1998, details of which are as follows:
















































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