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Mr. Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much aid in real terms the Government have given to (a) Africa and (b) Zimbabwe over the last five years. [68544]

Clare Short: The UK has given the following amounts to Zimbabwe and Africa, in current and constant prices, over the last five financial years.

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GPEX(7) in Zimbabwe and Africa in current and constant 2000–01 prices
£ thousand

Current prices
Constant prices

(7) GPEX is expenditure by all official UK sources ie Government Departments and public bodies on development assistance in aid recipient countries.


John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will list the developing countries which are in receipt of support from her Department to assist in the treatment of prevention from HIV/AIDS. [68325]

Clare Short: My Department is supporting HIV/ AIDS-related programmes in:

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John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps she is taking to help bring down the cost of anti-retroviral drugs for those suffering from HIV/AIDS in developing countries. [68324]

Clare Short: The UK's Working Group on Access to Medicines, which I chair, is looking at options for bringing about widespread, sustainable and predictable differential pricing of essential medicines, so that such medicines can be made available to the world's poor at affordable prices. The group's final meeting is on 25 July, after which it will report back to the Prime Minister. Differential pricing could apply to anti-retrovirals, which are now on the World Health Organisation's (WHO) essential drug list. We are encouraging key partners—pharmaceutical industry, developing countries, donors and international organisations—to play their part in making widespread differential pricing a reality.

The Government recognise that affordability is only one of four key factors that WHO has identified as influencing access to medicines. There is also a need for sustainable financing, the rational selection and use of existing drugs, and reliable health and supply systems.

On sustainable financing, we have pledged $200 million over five years to the Global Fund to Fight TB, AIDS and Malaria (GFATM). We have also committed over £1 billion, since 1997, to strengthening developing countries health systems, building their capacity both to deliver medicines to the poor and to make effective choices about the selection and use of drugs.

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Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what measures her Department is taking to (a) help with humanitarian aid and (b) educate people in areas with a high risk of AIDS. [67797]

Clare Short: The purpose of DFID humanitarian assistance policy is to save lives and relieve suffering; hasten recovery, and protect and rebuild livelihoods and communities; and reduce risks and vulnerability to future crises. The poor, and those whose vulnerability is increased due to disease, such as HIV/AIDS, are disproportionately affected by disasters and conflict. For example, in southern Africa, a serious drought has led to food shortages, which have stretched the coping capacity of the poorest families, many of whom are already suffering from having one or more of their family with HIV/AIDS. I have recently allocated £45 million to support the most vulnerable people in Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Lesotho and Swaziland.

My Department supports comprehensive HIV/AIDS prevention programmes tailored to local needs and situations. These can include interventions such as condoms, harm reduction, educating youth and safe needle exchange programmes. As part of DFID's HIV/ AIDS strategy, we have identified a focus on working with the most vulnerable groups in the society, which often include women, commercial sex workers, injecting drug users and men who have sex with men. Education leading to behavioural change is a central element of our strategy towards fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic. It forms the basis for any prevention, treatment and intervention programme.

Public Service Agreements

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many and what proportion of the public service agreements of her Department set out in the document, "Public Services for the Future 1998", have been met; and if she will make a statement. [68709]

Clare Short: My Department's 1999–2002 public service agreement (PSA) set 13 outcome targets of which eight were met, three were not updated due to lack of data, and two were not met. It also set 26 productivity targets, of which five were not met.

Full details of progress against the 1999–2002 PSA can be found in DFID's 2002 departmental report.


Victims of Terrorist Violence

5. Tony Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on the Government's policies on the support given to victims of terrorist violence in Northern Ireland. [65803]

7. Mr. Connarty: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what recent policy initiatives he has undertaken regarding the treatment of victims of terrorist violence. [65805]

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Dr. John Reid: This Government were the first to acknowledge the needs of all the victims of the troubles; this remains a priority. Since 1998 the Government have allocated over £18.25 million to victims' initiatives.

Police Service

8. Helen Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what steps he is taking to consolidate public support for the new Police Service of Northern Ireland. [65806]

Jane Kennedy: Together with the Police Service of Northern Ireland and the Policing Board we are working to bring about a new beginning to policing. The Policing Board, with nationalist participation, has an extensive range of powers to hold the police to account. The 50:50 recruitment campaign has produced a strong cross- community response, with 35 per cent. of applications coming from Catholics. There are around 350 new recruits who have completed or who are now in training.

Later this year, District Policing Partnerships will be established. They will have a significant role in increasing local accountability and will provide a forum for the police to work more closely with the community they serve.

The Government believe that, in the light of the enormous changes made to date, all parts of the community should support the police.

15. Rev. Martin Smyth: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on commitments given to Sinn Fein on further reform of the police service of Northern Ireland. [65813]

Jane Kennedy: The only commitments we have made on further reform of policing are those set out in the updated implementation plan which was issued to all Northern Ireland political parties and placed in the Library of the House in August last year.

A review is currently under way after which the Government will bring forward legislation to reflect further the Patten recommendations. All Northern Ireland political parties have been invited to contribute.


9. Mr. Soley: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on the decommissioning of illegally held weapons in Northern Ireland. [65807]

Jane Kennedy: The Government have consistently called for decommissioning from all paramilitary organisations. We have had two acts of decommissioning from the IRA. That must be the start of a process. It is imperative that we now see reciprocation from loyalists, so that all groups are committed to the normal political process in resolving its problems, and thereby creating a better Northern Ireland.

25. Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what recent progress has been made towards decommissioning. [65824]

Jane Kennedy: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Ealing, Acton and Shepherd's Bush (Mr. Soley).

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