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Gillian Merron: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what action he has taken to investigate whether special websites are used by hooligans to orchestrate football violence; and if he will make a statement; 
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(3) what investigations he has made into the number of football websites with links to paramilitary groups; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Denham: The National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS) monitors websites associated with football hooliganism and shares information with local police forces. There is no evidence that the sites are used to orchestrate football disorder, or that individuals who set up or visit the sites are directly involved in the phenomenon. Some sites do have information technology (IT) links with paramilitary websites and some hooligans do have links with racist and other extremist groups. However, football hooligans come from all social and cultural backgrounds and there seems to be no necessary connection between football disorder generally and political extremism.
Government and the police liaise closely on all matters connected with football disorder, including on internet and other communication issues. There are no plans to discuss hooligan websites with internet service providers. Material appearing on the internet is subject to the same laws as material distributed by other means, providing it falls within United Kingdom jurisdiction. The sites are monitored and, at present, the material posted on net servers based in the United Kingdom appears to reproduce information and opinions which, however unpalatable, are already published legally in the United Kingdom. Material posted on websites hosted abroad, which includes a number associated with football hooliganism, falls outside United Kingdom jurisdiction. NCIS liaises closely with overseas law enforcement agencies on this matter and mutual assistance arrangements are being developed as a requirement of the G8 Action Plan on 'high tech' crime.
Gillian Merron: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to introduce legislation to define criminal material on websites. 
Mr. Keith Bradley: Legislation already exists to combat the publication and distribution of illegal material and those laws apply equally online and offline. There are no plans to introduce legislation specific to websites.
Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what policies his Department has for dealing with domestic violence; and if he will publish them. 
Mr. Denham: The Home Office and the Women's Unit jointly published the policy document "Living without Fear: an integrated approach to tackling violence against women" in June 1999. The document set out the Government's goals for tackling violence against women which include:
to help today's children grow up in a society where violence is not part of family life and relationships are built on greater mutual respect; and
within five years to see effective multi-agency partnerships operating throughout England and Wales, drawing on good practice demonstrated in the mentioned publication.
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We have provided £120 million additional capital funding for a new Safer Communities Supported Housing Fund and increased funding for Victim Support. Over £10 million has been provided for a violence against women initiative within the Crime Reduction Programme to help us identify what interventions in what circumstances are the most effective and cost-effective.
In addition, an informal ministerial group on domestic violence involving representatives from seven key Departments is working closely together to consider the development and implementation of preventative strategies to address domestic violence. The group has highlighted five areas for priority action, which include piloting early interventions by health professionals and ensuring that the civil and criminal jurisdictions co-operate to best effect in domestic violence cases.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what discussions she had with the Governments of (a) the Irish Republic, (b) Norway and (c) Iceland prior to the approval of the MOX plant at Sellafield; 
Margaret Beckett: My officials have had discussions with Irish Government officials about the publication of 1997 data on MOX, and hold six-monthly meetings at which they and the devolved Administrations for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland brief one another on a range of radioactivity issues; but otherwise no such discussion has taken place.
I also refer the hon. Member to my answer of 4 February 2002, Official Report, column 752W.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will provide a breakdown of his latest estimate of the total cost to public funds of the foot and mouth outbreak; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the estimated final cost is of the foot and mouth epidemic. 
Margaret Beckett: I refer the hon. Members to the reply given by my hon. Friend the Lord Whitty, in another place, 4 February 2002, Official Report, (House of Lords), column WA65.
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Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what arrangements are in place for the extension of rate relief to businesses affected by foot and mouth disease. 
Dr. Whitehead: Local authorities can give discretionary rate relief to any business suffering hardship. Many authorities have used this power to give rate relief to businesses affected by foot and mouth disease. Normally, the Government meets 75 per cent. of the cost of such relief. However, special arrangements have been in place during 200102 whereby the Government have met 95 per cent. or 98 per cent. of the cost of hardship rate relief granted by 151 rural local authorities to small businesses affected by food and mouth disease. As part of the Government's response to the rural task force report on 13 December 2001, we announced that these arrangements would be extended to 31 March 2002. A special grant report giving effect to that extension will be laid before the House shortly. The Government have no plans to extend these arrangements beyond 200102, but local authorities will retain their powers to grant hardship relief, with 75 per cent. of the cost met centrally.
Mrs. Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate she has made of the number of refrigerators per day being added to storage by local authorities; and when she expects appropriate recycling plants to be operating in this country. 
Mr. Meacher [holding answer 29 January 2002]: It has been estimated that around 2.5 million domestic refrigeration units are disposed of in the UK each year. Not all these arisings will require storageany fridges in working order may be refurbished for re-sale and re-use on the domestic market. Fridges can also be incinerated in the UK or exported to other Member States for treatment. We anticipate that a specialist fridge recycling plant will be operating in the UK by spring.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if it is her policy to require major distributors of refrigerators who collect used refrigerators to return each one to the local authority in the area from which it originated. 
Mr. Meacher: Most retailers and other distributors no longer collect used refrigerators. We are looking at the options available to reinstate retailer take back. However, it is not my Department's policy to require the return of fridges to the local authority for the area from which they originated.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what discussions she has had with the Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions concerning proposals to expand airport runway capacity in the South East; and if she will make a statement; 
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Margaret Beckett [holding answer 31 January 2002]: The Government have been considering how to respond to the demand for air travel over the next 30 years and intends to publish a series of regional consultation documents, including one for the south-east and east of England, for public consultation in the spring. These consultation documents will set out possible options for developing airport capacity at airports across the UK. At the same time, to support these consultation documents, the Government intends to make the regional studies and supporting technical documents publicly available. The consultation will be followed by the publication of the Air Transport White Paper at the end of this year.
I am working closely with my colleague, the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions, on all the regional studies, including the south-east and east of England Regional Air Services study, and on the development of the Air Transport White Paper. Our two Departments have developed a framework for working together, to formalise our working and liaison arrangements. This is set out in an exchange of letters between our respective Permanent Secretaries, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House. DEFRA will be fully consulted on the content and timing of publication of the consultation documents, the supporting technical material and the White Paper.
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