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Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 10 June 2003


Aid (Colombia)

Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Prime Minister who has been invited to the aid donors meeting on Colombia to be held on 10th July. [118601]

The Prime Minister: The US, European Commission, UN EU member states, Canada, Japan Norway, Switzerland, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico and the Inter-American Development Bank. IMF and the World Bank have been invited to the meeting. Representatives from civil society will be invited to contribute.


Mr. Brady: To ask the Prime Minister if he will undertake to inform the House that editing has taken place in the event that he exercises his power to edit a report of the Intelligence and Security Committee. [118444]

The Prime Minister: I have said I will publish the report in the usual way.

Gregory Barker: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his oral answer of 4 June 2003, Official Report, column 150, what steps have been taken by the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) to establish the identity of the individuals within the SIS who have been speaking anonymously to the media; what form the investigations have taken; what the terms of reference are; who is leading the investigation; when it is expected to report; to whom it will report; and whether the conclusions of the investigation will be made public. [118585]

The Prime Minister: I refer the hon. Member to the answers I gave to the hon. Member for Chingford and Woodford Green (Mr. Duncan Smith) at Prime Minister's Questions on 4 June 2003, Official Report, columns 147–150.

David Cairns: To ask the Prime Minister when he expects to lay the Intelligence and Security Committee's Annual Report for 2002–03 before Parliament. [118558]

The Prime Minister: I am grateful to the Intelligence and Security Committee for their valuable work and their latest annual report. Following consultation with the Intelligence and Security Committee over matters which could not be published without prejudicing the discharge of the function and operation of the Intelligence and Security agencies. I have laid the report before the House today. Copies will also be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

The Government will respond formally to the report shortly.

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Tariq Aziz

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his oral answer of 4 June 2003 Official Report, column 156, what process will be used in the trials of senior Iraqi figures, with particular reference to Mr.Tariq Aziz; and when he expects such trials to take place. [118592]

The Prime Minister: We have always believed that those who have been responsible for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Iraq should be brought to justice. No decisions have yet been taken on how this should be pursued. It should be for the Iraqi people to decide what action to take, with suitable international help.

A team of coalition specialists has started assessing the situation on the ground, listening to the wishes of the Iraqi people and making recommendations for future action. UK forces have been tasked with securing and protecting evidence to hand over to the relevant prosecuting authorities at the appropriate time. The UK sent a team of none forsensic experts to Iraq on 21 May 2003, to investigate war crimes and mass graves.



Mr. Bercow: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what the total expenditure on advertising by the Office was in (a) 2001–02 and (b) 2002–03; and what the level of planned expenditure is for (i) 2003–04 and (ii) 2004–05. [114431]

Mr. Alexander: Details of my Department's spend on advertising in each year from 2001–02 to 2002–03 and planned expenditure in 2003–04 can be found in the table.


2003–04 Planned267

The 2002–03 figure is subject to final audit and the planned figure for 2003–04 has not yet been finalised. Therefore, both of these figures may be subject to change. The planned spend for 2004–05 is not available without incurring disproportionate cost.

The increase in advertising expenditure from 2000–01 to 2001–02 is due to expenditure of £2,491,000 incurred by the Office of the E-Envoy for the UK online advertising campaign.

Departmental Employees

Mr. Gray: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many employees there were in each Department of State (a) in 1997 and (b) on the latest date for which figures are available. [118248]

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Mr. Alexander: The information is published annually, in Table C of 'Civil Service Statistics' which covers permanent staff numbers in each department and agency from 1995 to 2001, copies of which are laid in the Libraries of both Houses. The last edition, based on April 2001 data, was published in June 2002.

The next edition, based on April 2002 data, is due to be published in July 2003.

Alternatively, this information is available at the following address on the Cabinet Office Statistics website: http://www.civil-service.gov.uk/statistics/css.htm.

Ministers for Regulatory Reform

Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if he will make a statement on the work of the Ministers for Regulatory Reform. [117774]

Mr. Alexander: Regulatory Reform Ministers are responsible to the Prime Minister for championing better regulation. They are charged with removing any regulations, which are outdated or burdensome and ensuring that the new regulations are necessary and if so, are introduced in a light touch way.

Regulatory Reform Ministers ensure policy officials deliver better regulation and make full use of regulatory reform tools, such as carrying out regulatory impact assessments on policy proposals and removing outdated and burdensome legislation by Regulatory Reform Order.

These Ministers also support their Departments in completing the proposals outlined in the Government's regulatory reform action plan that was published in February 2002. To date they have achieved good progress in this area and we are on track to deliver this plan.

Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if he will list the meetings of the Ministers for Regulatory Reform since establishment; and, for each meeting, if he will list (a) Ministers attending and (b) the person in the chair. [117775]

Mr. Alexander: Since the establishment of Regulatory Reform Ministers, they have met on 30 March 2000, 17 July 2001, 4 February 2002 and 2 December 2002. The Minister for the Cabinet Office chairs these meetings. Dr. Marjorie Mowlam chaired the first meeting on 30 March 2000 and Lord Macdonald chaired subsequent meetings. The majority of Regulatory Reform Ministers attended these meetings.

World Summit

Mr. Horam: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office which United Kingdom commitments arising from the World Summit on Sustainable Development

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(a) have been incorporated into the Department's existing delivery plan for service delivery agreements and (b) will be incorporated in its delivery plan for service delivery agreements in advance of the 2004 spending review. [113878]

Mr. Alexander: The Cabinet Office does not have lead responsibility for any of the UK commitments arising from the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD).

The Cabinet Office fully supports plans to incorporate UK commitments into Departments' delivery plans and related targets. We have dedicated resources to ensure that, where appropriate and relevant, UK commitments are fully taken into account in our policies and operations.


Binge Drinking

Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many teenagers have died from binge drinking in each year since 1997. [117582]

John Healey: I have been asked to reply.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician. I have asked him to reply.

Letter from Len Cook to Mr. Paul Marsden, dated 10 June 2003:

Deaths from accidental poisoning by alcohol, teenagers(1), England and Wales, 1997 to 2001(2)

Calendar yearNumber of deaths from accidental poisoning by alcohol(3)Number of deaths from drug-related poisoning, alcohol poisoning mentioned(4)

(1) Teenagers defined as aged 13–19.

(2) Data are for deaths occurring in a calendar year

(3) Figures are based on the underlying cause of death, defined using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision ICD-9) code E860 for the years 1997 to 2000 and the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10) code X45 for2001.

(4) Where both drug and alcohol poisoning are mentioned on the death certificate, international coding rules state that the death should be coded to the drug.

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