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19 Dec 2005 : Column 2338W—continued

Defence Systems and Equipment Exhibition

Mr. Moore: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the types of equipment exhibited at the Defence Systems and Equipment International 2005 exhibition which are banned for direct export under British law. [32639]

Malcolm Wicks: I have been asked to reply.
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The DTI is not responsible for authorising displays at this exhibition, and the question should be referred to the organiser, who worked closely with the Ministry of Defence.

The DTI's role is limited to the issue of export licences where these are required, e.g. for the re-export of goods on display after the exhibition, or the promotion of trade in controlled or restricted goods between third countries. On that basis, we are not aware that any of the goods specified were exhibited at DSEI2005. Beyond that, export licences are not required for the exhibition of such goods in the UK. Firearms licences may however be required from the Home Office.

The Government's 1997 ban on the export and transhipment through the UK of torture goods relates to portable devices designed or modified for riot control purposes or self-protection to administer an electric shock, including electric-shock batons, electric-shock shields, stun guns, and tasers, and specially designed components for such devices, and leg-irons, gang-chains, shackles (excluding normal handcuffs). Since 1998, the import, export, transfer and manufacture of all forms of anti-personnel landmines has also been banned.

Departmental Staff

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many staff are employed by his Department in each (a) region and (b) nation of the UK; and if he will make a statement. [35887]

Mr. Touhig: The number of staff employed by the Ministry Of Defence by region and nation of the UK can be found in United Kingdom Defence Statistics 2005 Table 2.3: Service and Civilian Personnel by Government Office Region, at 1 April each year (see

Service data is published quarterly in TSP10; the most recent publication shows the numbers of Service personnel at 1 July 2005. Copies of TSP 10 are held in the Library of the House and also available on

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many personnel will be relocated from RAF Innsworth to RAF High Wycombe in the restructuring of RAF headquarters. [37000]

Mr. Ingram: As recruitment to the new organisation is not due to conclude until next summer and as the RAF Personnel Management Agency are not due to relocate until 2008, it is too early to state how many posts will be filled by personnel relocating from RAF Innsworth to RAF High Wycombe.

Departmental Telephone Lines

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 10 November 2005, Official Report, column 705W, on departmental telephone lines, if he will list the organisations which hold the records on 0870 numbers used by his Department and the revenue received from them. [37949]

Mr. Touhig: The information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
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Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether a Minister in his Department is planned to be nominated to take responsibility for liaison with the Office for Disability Issues; and if he will make a statement. [37059]

Mr. Touhig: The Ministry of Defence is not a key Department in taking forward the recommendations of the Prime Minister's Strategy Unit Report Improving the Life Chances of Disabled People" with the Office for Disability Issues, and is not, therefore, a member of the cross-government ministerial steering group. We are, however, kept fully aware of the work of the steering group and will be involved as necessary. I am the lead Minister for equality and diversity issues generally within the Department.

Equipment Exports (Libya/China)

Robert Key: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is on exporting defence equipment to (a) Libya and (b) China. [36746]

Dr. Howells: I have been asked to reply.

The Government continues to implement fully the EU arms embargo on exports to China, as set out by my hon. Friend the then Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the late Derek Fatchett, in his reply to a question by the hon. Member for Gedling (Vernon Coaker) on 3 June 1998 Official Report, columns 240W-241W. In addition, all export licence applications for Libya and China are rigorously assessed on a case by case basis against the consolidated EU and national arms export licensing criteria, taking account of the circumstances prevailing at the time and other announced Government policies. The criteria clearly set out, among other considerations, our commitment to assess the risk that exports might be diverted under undesirable conditions, used for internal repression, external aggression, to abuse human rights, or the risk of reverse engineering or unintended technology transfer.

Falklands/South Georgia

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defencehow many (a) Army, (b) Navy and (c) RAF personnel are serving in (i) the Falklands and (ii) South Georgia. [37161]

Mr. Ingram: There are approximately 390 Army, 340 Navy and 680 Royal Air Force personnel serving in the Falklands. The numbers of armed forces personnel serving in the Falklands and South Georgia will vary throughout the year as a result of individual posting plots and unit movements.

There are no armed forces personnel based permanently on South Georgia.

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people sit on the (a) South Georgia Council and (b) Falklands Island Council. [37162]

Mr. Douglas Alexander: I have been asked to reply.
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The Falkland Islands Legislative Council has eight elected members and four ex officio members (who have no vote). Three of the legislative councillors form the executive council, which also has five ex officio members and is chaired by the Governor.

South Georgia has no permanent population and has no legislative council.

Future Joint Combat Aircraft

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what missile systems were to be fitted to the Future Joint Combat Aircraft when first designed; what the current position is; and if he will make a statement. [38186]

Mr. Ingram: The Joint Combat Aircraft (JCA) will enter UK service with a potent air-to-ground and air-to-air capability provided by Paveway IV precision guided bombs, and ASRAAM and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles. Future requirements are kept under review as part of the aircraft's ongoing capability development: among the weapons under consideration for integration at a later date are Storm Shadow and Brimstone. Our missile system requirements have not changed from when the Joint Strike Fighter was selected to meet our JCA requirement.

HMS Sheffield

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 17 November 2005, Official Report, column 1409W, on HMS Sheffield, whathis timetable is for (a) the completion of the departmental review and (b) the publication of the findings; and if he will make a statement. [32367]

Mr. Ingram: The Ministry of Defence review is still continuing but I hope to be in a position to write to the hon. Member in the new year to advise him of the timetable for its completion. At that time, it should also be possible to provide an indication as to when any documents relating to the Board of Inquiry into the loss of HMS Sheffield may be made public.

Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what arrangements his Department has made to facilitate the financial assistance offered by the US-based Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund to the families of British personnel lost on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. [36458]

Mr. Touhig [holding answer 14 December 2005]: Since June 2003, the Intrepid/Anheusar Busch Fallen Heroes Fund (Intrepid Foundation) has, very generously, been supporting the widows and children of US and UK Service personnel killed while serving on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Support ceased in June 2005 when the Intrepid Foundation decided to concentrate its activities in support of limbless US Service personnel. This decision was taken in light of the recent US Congress decision to significantly enhance the support given to families of personnel killed while on operations.
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The Ministry of Defence has a liaison officer in place who regularly communicates with the Intrepid Foundation in New York and facilitates payments through the appropriate single Service casualty organisation. The Intrepid Foundation has paid $10,000 to each widow and $5,000 to each child of a Service person who has died. Where an unmarried partner is involved, the Foundation has paid $5,000 to each child. Forty-eight families have so far benefited from the Intrepid Foundation with payments ranging from $5,000 to $25,000. There are four outstanding cases that the Fund and the Ministry of Defence continue to work on.

When the scheme ceased in June this year the Chief of the Defence Staff wrote to the Chairman of the Intrepid Foundation thanking him personally for his support. Iwould like to take this opportunity to add my own personal thanks for their very generous and unstinting support.

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