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17 Dec 2002 : Column 704Wcontinued
Clare Short: We are supporting the full implementation of the Arusha agreement on Burundi and the Transitional National Government, including through financial support for the peace facilitation process and for the costs of the South African security deployment in Burundi. We continue to work energetically in the international community including at the recent Donors Round Table Conference in Geneva to carry forward the Arusha agreement. We are playing an active role in encouraging international financial institutions to re-engage in Burundi, and are increasing our development assistanceincluding a $1 million contribution to the Burundi Multidonor Debt Trust Fund. We have posted a full-time DFID representative to Bujumbura to facilitate this increased activity.
Mr. Joyce: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps her Department will be taking to support the recent peace agreement between the Transitional Government of Burundi and rebel group the FDD and to encourage peace talks between the Transitional Government of Burundi and rebel group the FNL. 
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Clare Short: We are actively engaged with our international partners in considering how we should respond to the proposed African Mission to support the Dar es Salaam ceasefire agreement with the FDD. We are also in discussion with the Transitional National Government on their security sector reform needs to support the agreement. We are working closely with the FCO and international partners to help the facilitation efforts of the South Africans, Tanzanians, Ugandans and Gabonese to continue efforts to get the FNL to sign the ceasefire.
John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what correspondence she has had with the Government of Burundi regarding alleged human rights violations against children held in detention centres; and if she will make a statement. 
Clare Short : I have not had any correspondence with the Government of Burundi on this issue. According to the latest statistics published by UNICEF and Libejeun (a local NGO) there are currently 199 children in Burundian prisons.
Conditions appear to be well below international minimum standards. However, considerable improvements have been noted by Amnesty International and the ICRC over the last two to three years in prisons where ICRC have been paying monitoring visits and installing water and sanitation equipment. We are providing financial support to the ICRC programmes in Burundi and elsewhere in the Great Lakes. Our embassy continues to monitor the situation.
Ann McKechin: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment her Department has made of the Final Report of the UN Panel of Experts on the Illegal Exploitation of Natural Resources and Other Forms of Wealth of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 
Clare Short: We broadly welcome the final report of the UN Panel of Experts, which contains some important recommendations aimed at ensuring that the Democratic Republic of Congo's natural resources are used for the benefit of all its people. However we believe that it contains significant inaccuracies and some allegations on which there is no evidence. We and other members of the Security Council have asked for further information from the panel on the claims contained within it. The panel's mandate expired when it submitted its final report, and there is currently no mechanism or process in place to take forward their work. We are working on a draft Security Council Resolution to resolve this administrative problem.
Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what percentage of her Department's budget was spent on (a) reproductive health and (b) HIV/AIDS in (i) 19992000, (ii) 200001 and (iii) 200102. 
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|HIV/AIDS related expenditure||75.7||124.9||206.6|
|Annual bilateral programme||1,323.9||1,414.8||1,506.2|
|Percentage of total programme||6%||9%||14%|
The above data combine projects that have been marked against the Reproductive Health Services and HIV/AIDS policy markers. Increasingly, DFID is helping to tackle HIV/AIDS within the context of large sexual and reproductive health programmes and sustainable health systems development. In these circumstances, it is often difficult to attribute spend to particular aspects of sexual and reproductive health. For example, provision of condoms serves the dual purposes of HIV/AIDS prevention and protection against other sexually transmitted infections as well as family planning. We strongly believe that a cross-sectoral approach to tackling HIV/AIDS is essential if we are to be successful. The International Development Committee share this view. This does, however, pose problems of attribution.
Clare Short: Our forecast support for basic education amounts to #1.3 billion over the next five years, either through education sector support or direct budget support. Of this, about #500 million will go to Africa and #800 million to Asia. A substantial proportion will go to low income countries included within the Fast Track Initiative, notably to the five high population countries with large numbers of children out of school (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, DRC) which the Government successfully pressed to have included in the initiative. These spending figures are forecasts, not targets or commitments, and depend on agreeing high quality programmes with our partners.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what is the total volume of food aid (a) her Department and (b) the EU has delivered to Ethiopia in 2002; and on what dates that food arrived in Ethiopia. 
Clare Short: My Department has provided 4,887 Mts of food aid through the World Food Programme and 6,400 Mts through Save the Children (UK) in 2002. In both cases, food was drawn down from the Emergency Food Security Reserve (EFSR) and distributed immediately following our commitment. Both organisations subsequently purchased food locally. WFP paid back into the EFSR in September and SC(UK) will complete repayment this week.
We understand that the EU has so far provided 99,800 Mts of food aid in 2002. Of the 99,800 Mts, 22,800 Mts was delivered through the World Food Programme. We are told that it is difficult to produce actual delivery dates as the 99,800 Mts was purchased
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locally. A further 22,800 Mts will be delivered by the end of December. DFID contributes almost 20 per cent. of the cost of EU assistance.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what volume of food (a) her Department and (b) the EU has pledged to Ethiopia for 2003; and when she expects these food deliveries to arrive in Ethiopia. 
Clare Short: In addition to the 11,287 Mts of food aid we provided in 2002, we have just approved the provision of 2,577 Mts of supplementary food aid through CARE International for 2003 for 286,300 vulnerable people in East and West Hararghe zones. It is expected that this will be delivered in the first two months of 2003. We are keeping the situation in Ethiopia under continuous review and are considering the provision of further food aid for 2003.
On 9 December, in response to the December Emergency Appeal, the European Union announced the provision of 260,000 Mts of food aid for Ethiopia in 2003. We understand that they expect that this will be delivered in March-April 2003. DFID contributes almost 20 per cent. of the cost of EU assistance.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what was discussed at the meeting of the EU's General Affairs and External Relations Council on 9 and 10 December regarding Ethiopia. 
Clare Short: Ethiopia was not discussed at the GAERC on 910 December despite it being on the agenda. However, in response to the Government of Ethiopia/UN Appeal on 9 December the Commission announced a new emergency food aid programme worth #70 million, which is equivalent to 260,000 metric tonnes of cereals.
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