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Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make it his policy (a) to oppose the introduction of new admissibility criteria for individual petitioners to the European Court of Human Rights and (b) to urge all member states to consult on the matter with (i) the legal community and (ii) civil society; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. MacShane: The Government supports the introduction of the new admissibility criteria for individual petitioners to the European Court of Human Rights. The new admissibility criteria are not designed to restrict the right of individual application. But if the Court is not given discretion to apply the new criteria, that right could be put at risk by the ever-increasing volume of applications which prevents the Court from dealing with any applications in a reasonable time.
The Government endorses paragraph 14 of the Council of Europe's Committee of Ministers' Declaration of 15 May, which encourages the Governments of member states to share information on this matter with civil society. Civil society representatives and independent experts will have the opportunity to raise questions at a Symposium at the Council of Europe on 17 November, with a further symposium proposed for early 2004.
Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what shared competence exists on energy policy within the EU; and what impact he estimates the proposed Energy Chapter will have on the United Kingdom. 
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list the areas of policy, legislation, administration and decision on objectives to be attained which (a) are and (b) will be the exclusive responsibility of the European Union, and the Articles of the proposed Constitution in which these are set out. 
Mr. MacShane: Article 12 (1) of Part I of the Convention on the Future of Europe's draft Constitutional Treaty states that the EU would have exclusive competence in the following areas: competition rules necessary for the functioning of the internal market: monetary policy for member states who
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Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with the Gibraltar Government in negotiations with the Spanish Government on the future of Gibraltar. 
Mr. MacShane: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has had no recent discussions with the Government of Gibraltar on this subject. When 1 visited Gibraltar on 4 July, my discussions with the Chief Minister covered, among many other issues, the subject of negotiations with Spain.
Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the decision by the United States Supreme Court to reassess the legality of holding prisoners in Guantanamo military base as it affects British prisoners held there. 
Mr. Mullin: On 10 November, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in the case Al Odah v. United States, which concerns detainees held in Guantanamo Bay. The question that the Court has agreed to hear is "Whether United States courts lack jurisdiction to consider challenges to the legality of the detention of foreign nationals captured abroad in connection with hostilities and incarcerated at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, Cuba."
Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions his Department has had with the Government of Indonesia on (a) suppressing the rebels' uprising and (b) humanitarian assistance in Aceh. 
Together with other members of the Tokyo Group (the EU, US, Japan and World Bank) we have recently called for improved access to Aceh for international agencies and NGOs, and for the impact on the people of Aceh to be minimised. The UK continues to work through NGOs and the UN to provide assistance to the people of Aceh. We continue to discuss Aceh with political contacts in Indonesia and the Indonesian Ambassador to the UK.
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Atomic Energy Agency to support its increased safeguards burden in Iran following the agreement concluded in Tehran on 21 October. 
Mr. MacShane: The United Kingdom supported a successful call for additional resources for the IAEA's activities at the board of Governors' meeting earlier this year. We believe that, with these additional resources, the IAEA will be able to undertake all of the safeguards tasks with which they are mandated, including work in Iran.
Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps the Government is taking to prevent the Islamic Republic of Iran from obtaining and developing the capabilities to (a) produce and (b) employ nuclear weapons. 
Mr. Rammell: Together with our partners from France and German, we have been engaged in intensive discussion with the Iranian Government to persuade them to suspend activities associated with the development of a nuclear weapons capability.
Iran has announced that it will suspend the enrichment of uranium and activities associated with the reprocessing of nuclear fuels. We will continue to monitor closely Iran's implementation of this course of action.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the evidential basis is for the statements made on page 34 and 35 of the Iraq dossier of 24 September on inspections by UNSCOM of the presidential sites. 
Mr. Rammell: Only one team of inspectors (UNSCOM 243) was allowed to visit Presidential Sites under a special arrangement facilitated by the UN Secretary-General. Their report of their visit to the sites makes clear that they were not able to carry out full inspections at any of the sites. They were never allowed to return.
Rev. Martin Smyth: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the United Kingdom's contribution to the provision of a civil police service in Iraq. 
Mr. Rammell: There are currently a total of 10 UK police officers in Iraq; three in Basra and seven in Baghdad. Our focus is on recruiting, training and deploying more Iraqi police officers. We plan to deploy a further 24 UK officers to Basra in the near future and
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up to a further 75 UK police officers towards a multinational effort to train new Iraqi recruits at a training facility in Jordan. The first nine of these 75 police officers are already in Jordan and another 27 are planning to depart on 23 November.
Mr. Woodward: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Iraqi (a) civilians, (b) police officers and (c) military police he estimates have been killed in terrorist attacks in Iraq since 1 May. 
Mr. Rammell: There are no reliable statistics available for the number of civilian casualties. I expect to have further information shortly on the Iraqi police killed, and I will write to my hon. Friend.
Mr. Pike: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what efforts are being made in Iraq to re-employ the Iraqis who are unemployed; what discussions he has on assisting these people while unemployed; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Rammell: The Coalition and Iraqi ministries have placed very significant emphasis on the need to sustain and stimulate employment in Iraq. The payment in full of public sector wages has returned rewards for work to many crucial employees. A micro-finance programme has been created for small businesses and rules on foreign direct investment and tariff holidays have also been introduced to promote the Iraqi private sector, protecting existing jobs and creating new ones.
As a result of the publication of the Iraqi Budgets for 2003 and 2004, for the first time in decades the revenue from Iraqi oil sales is being spent on meeting the needs of the Iraqi people. In combination with the many billions of dollars of international reconstruction funding being channelled into Iraq this public expenditure is stimulating demand for labour.
With the exception of senior Ba'athists, former members of the military who lost their job as a result of disbanding the Iraqi army have been paid a stipend. Many are also undergoing retraining to join the new Iraqi security forces.
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