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Gibraltar

Brian Cotter: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will postpone the Brussels talks with his Spanish counterpart until proceedings on the new constitutional proposal before Gibraltar's House of Assembly have been completed. [30634]

Peter Hain: [holding answer 25 January 2002]: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave my hon. Friend the Member for Thurrock (Andrew Mackinlay) on 12 December 2001, Official Report, columns 853–54W. We shall continue talks with Spain under the Brussels Process.

We understand that the Select Committee on Constitutional Reform of the Gibraltar House of Assembly has agreed draft proposals for constitutional reform, and look forward to receiving these in due course.

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what mechanisms will be put in place to ensure a referendum in Gibraltar resulting from any bi-lateral agreement between Spain and the United Kingdom on the future status of Gibraltar is conducted in a free and fair manner. [30697]

Peter Hain [holding answer 25 January 2002]: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave my hon. Friend the Member for Chorley (Mr. Hoyle) on 8 January 2002, Official Report, column 580W. As my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs said in this House on 14 January, the Government stand by the pledge that any agreement reached under the Brussels Process will be subject, in a free, secret ballot, to the wishes of the people of Gibraltar.

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions are taking place with Spain to allow re-directed aircraft from Gibraltar to land in Spain. [30551]

Peter Hain [holding answer 25 January 2002]: The Government resumed talks with Spain under the Brussels Process in July 2001: these talks continue. In accordance with the terms of the Brussels Communiqué, November 1984, the talks are aimed at overcoming all the differences between the UK and Spain over Gibraltar and at promoting co-operation on a mutually beneficial basis, including on aviation.

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions have taken place with Spain on (a) direct sailings of cruise ships from Gibraltar to Spain, (b) direct flights from Spain to Gibraltar and (c) ferry links between Gibraltar and Algeciras. [30553]

Peter Hain [holding answer 25 January 2002]: The Government resumed talks with Spain under the Brussels Process in July 2001: these talks continue. In accordance

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with the terms of the Brussels Communiqué, November 1984, the talks are aimed at overcoming all the differences between the UK and Spain over Gibraltar and at promoting co-operation on a mutually beneficial basis on economic, cultural, touristic, aviation, military and environment matters.

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs under what statutory powers action can be taken against Spain in respect of (a) the open skies policy, (b) air safety and (c) direct sailings between Spain and Gibraltar. [30436]

Peter Hain [holding answer 25 January 2002]: No such statutory powers exist.

Mr. Beggs: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions have taken place on including Gibraltar in the EU Open Skies Agreement. [30725]

Peter Hain: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Cheltenham (Mr. Jones) on 1 November 2001, Official Report, column 811W. There have been no further discussions with Spain on this matter, except in so far as any agreement with Spain approved by the people of Gibraltar at the European Union would resolve this issue.

Spain

Mr. Ronnie Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what legal action he plans to take against Spain about (a) mobile telephone roaming and (b) border queues. [30723]

Peter Hain: The UK Government have no plans to take legal action against Spain. The EC Treaty confers primary responsibility for the enforcement of Community Law on the Commission.

UK Nationals (Cuba)

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if members of the UK delegation who visited the UK nationals being held by US forces in Cuba will be involved in the interrogation of those UK nationals. [30662]

Mr. Bradshaw: The UK team which visited Guantanamo Bay has interviewed those detainees held there who claim British nationality. The team comprised members qualified to ask questions about the identity, nationality and welfare of the detainees and also to ask questions relevant to international terrorism and UK national security.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if UK nationals held by US forces in Cuba were informed before they left Afghanistan that they were to be taken to Cuba and of the length of the journey. [30656]

Mr. Bradshaw: The report by officials did not cover this point, which is one for the US authorities.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if there were United Kingdom nationals among the wounded prisoners who arrived at the US base in Cuba in the week beginning 21 January. [30660]

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Mr. Bradshaw: We have not been informed of any further transfers of British detainees. The US have assured us that they will keep us informed.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if members of the UK delegation who visited the UK nationals being held by US forces in Cuba discussed allegations of sensory deprivation with them. [30661]

Mr. Bradshaw: The British officials responsible for the interviews gave the detainees full opportunity to express concern about their treatment, including sensory deprivation. None complained of ill-treatment and they all appeared to be in good physical health.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will ensure that Parliament is kept informed on a regular basis of the conditions under which UK nationals are being held by US forces. [30654]

Mr. Bradshaw: I will be happy to bring any significant changes to the attention of Parliament.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the US Government about the tribunals by which the UK nationals who are being held by US forces at Guatanamo Bay will be tried. [30658]

Mr. Bradshaw: The US has yet to make public the procedures. We have asked for information and made clear our view that these should be consistent with international norms for trial.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when the UK Government were notified that the first planeload of prisoners to the US base for prisoners in Cuba included UK nationals. [30653]

Mr. Bradshaw: We have had many discussions with the US authorities about detention of British nationals, including their possible transfer. Their transfer was confirmed to our Embassy in Washington on 11 January, the day the detainees arrived in Guantanamo.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will name the officials who were members of the UK Government delegation who visited the UK nationals held by US forces in Cuba. [30657]

Mr. Bradshaw: Under Exemptions 1a and 15 of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information, I am unable to publish the names of the officials.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if US personnel were present at the meetings held between the UK delegation and the UK nationals being held by US forces in Cuba. [30663]

Mr. Bradshaw: British officials visiting the detainees were accompanied by representatives of the US as the detaining power.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what charges have been laid against the UK nationals held by US forces in Cuba; whether their legal rights have been discussed with them; and whether they have been offered legal representation. [30655]

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Mr. Bradshaw: We are not yet aware of any charges but are in regular contact with the US regarding next steps. If the detainees face prosecution, under international norms they are entitled to legal representation.

Ann Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has received from foreign Governments on the conditions in which prisoners are being held by US forces at Guantanamo Bay. [30659]

Mr. Bradshaw: None.


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