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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 5 July 2006, Official Report, column 1150W,
on Afghanistan, what the (a) name and (b) job description is of each of the UK-funded advisers who are members of the Provisional Reconstruction Team. 
Dr. Howells: The UK is funding the provision of advisers working in the fields of governance, police reform and justice/rule of law to the UK-led Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Lashkar Gah, Helmand Province. All will work to promote the development of effective and transparent provincial governance in line with the Afghan Governments administrative reform processes. This will include helping to build capacity to plan, co-ordinate and implement the provision of basic public services and to exercise the rule of law. It will focus on helping local governance institutions, including the governors office, provincial departments of line Ministries, the Provincial Council and Provincial Development Committee, to design and deliver the activities required to fulfil their mandates. The advisers will seek to facilitate the roll-out of current programmes from the national level to Helmand.
The governance adviser will aim to strengthen provincial public administration and representative and planning institutions. The police adviser will co-ordinate UK activities in southern Afghanistan in support of the Afghan police, building contacts with and the capacity of provincial and district police chiefs. The justice/rule of law adviser will aim to strengthen the criminal justice system, identifying ways to address linkages between informal and formal justice sector institutions, and to strengthen dispute-resolution mechanisms.
Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many (a) UN and (b) EU officials are based in the Provisional Reconstruction Team in Helmand Province; and what the purpose is of each. 
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps her Department is taking to promote the equal application of law to women and men in Afghanistan; and what assessment she has made of womens access to legal representation in Afghanistan. 
The Afghan constitution states that the citizens of Afghanistan have equal rights and duties before the law. The Justice for All Action Plan provides the basis for the reform of the Afghan justice sector over the next 12 years. The Plan is divided into five areas of activity: law reform, institution building, and access to justice programs, traditional justice and co-ordination. The Global Conflict Prevention Pool (the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), Ministry of Defence and the Department for International Development funded) has provided US $500,000 in support of this Action
Plan. In addition, the FCO, through the Global Opportunities Fund is sponsoring a number of projects specifically designed to increase womens access to justice, improve their living standards, promote womens equal participation in governance, create a professional network of womens rights organisations and promote access to information through the radio.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations the UK Government have made to the Chinese Government regarding transmission to China of the BBC World Service websites and broadcasts. 
Dr. Howells: The Government are concerned about restrictions on media freedom in China. We regularly raise our concerns with the Chinese Government about China's jamming of BBC World Service broadcasts in Chinese and blocking of the BBC World Service website; most recently our Ambassador in Beijing raised this with the State Council Information Office on 11 July. The then Minister of State for Trade, Investment and Foreign Affairs, my hon. Friend the Member for Dudley, South (Ian Pearson), raised this issue with the Chinese Government on 7 April. The Government are in regular contact with the BBC over this issue and have expressed their wish to see this issue resolved prior to the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
Dr. Howells: On 31 March 2006, British Consular officials were aware of 2,255 British Nationals detained in overseas prisons. This includes those awaiting trial as well as those serving custodial sentences. We do not maintain separate records of the numbers of British nationals awaiting trial or serving custodial sentences. As information on British nationals in prison overseas is held on case files, it would incur disproportionate cost to provide this information.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions she has had with (a) Tanzania, (b) Ghana and (c) Republic of Congo in their capacity as members of the Security Council regarding United Nations resolutions on Burma. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what
representations she has made to the government of (a) France, (b) Austria, (c) Germany, (d) Italy and (e) Spain regarding investments in Burma. 
Mr. McCartney: We have made no such representations to the governments of these countries. The EU Common Position on Burma prohibits investment by EU member states in listed state-owned companies with links to the Burmese military. All EU member states are bound by the Common Position.
Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions she has had with the government of Burma on (a) the Karen people in Eastern Burma and (b) other issues relating to Burma; and if she will make a statement. 
On 15 June, I summoned the Burmese Ambassador to raise our concerns about the human rights abuses suffered by ethnic groups, including the Karen; forced labour; restrictions on religious freedom; the use of sexual violence and the exploitation of children. I also repeated our call for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and that of all other political prisoners held in Burma.
On 5 July, I wrote to the Burmese Foreign Minister, reiterating the points I made to the Burmese Ambassador. I shall arrange for a copy of my letter to be placed in the Library of the House and for a copy of the letter to be sent to the hon. Member.
Mr. McCartney [holding answer 27 June 2006]: The Darfur Peace Agreement was signed on 5 May. Implementation has been slow. There has been less fighting between the two parties to the agreement: the Sudanese government and the main rebel faction. But overall levels of violence in Darfur remain high. We are providing practical support to the African Union and the parties to help them with implementation. And we are encouraging those who have not yet signed the agreement to support it.
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment she has made of the allegation that Chinese-supplied weapons
have been discovered in Darfur; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. McCartney [holding answer 27 June 2006]: We are aware of reports that Chinese weapons have been found in Darfur. The UN has an arms embargo on the Darfur region, which prohibits the movement of arms into Darfur unless specifically authorised by the UN beforehand. We are also actively encouraging China to support work towards an arms trade treaty which would end the irresponsible trade in conventional arms.
I have raised with the Chinese ambassador the huge challenges that Africa must meet in terms of peace and stability, sustainable development and good governance and encouraged China to play a positive role as a responsible and leading member of the international community.
Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions she has held with the governments of (a) Rwanda, (b) Uganda, (c) Congo Brazzaville and (d) Angola on (i) the security situation in Democratic Republic of the Congo and (ii) the presence of non-Congolese irregular forces; and if she will make a statement. 
Dr. Howells: The security situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) remains fragile, especially in the east and north-east. Officials from our missions in the Great Lakes region regularly discuss the security situation in the DRC and its border areas with the governments to which they are accredited.
We continue to remind regional governments of the need to respect Congolese territorial sovereignty and to work together to resolve the issue of the foreign armed groups in the region. We underline that there must be no external support for Congolese armed groups that try to disrupt the peace process and that the DRC must take action to deal with the armed groups on its soil. UN Security Council Resolution 1653 reinforced this message. We support the US-facilitated Tripartite Plus Commission which brings Ugandan, Rwandan, Burundian and Congolese Foreign Ministers together to find solutions to issues affecting the region.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what plans she has to make representations to her Russian counterpart on the provisions of the Energy Charter Treaty; 
(3) what assessment her Department has made of the impact on the likelihood of the Russian Federation signing the Transit Protocol of the Energy Charter Treaty of the law passed by the Russian State Duma on Gazprom's control of gas exports from Russia; 
The UK, with other G7 members, has encouraged Russia to move forward during its G8 presidency and ratify the Energy Charter Treaty, of which it is already a signatory and applies on a provisional basis.
The UK is concerned that the proposed Russian Gas Export law would appear to contradict several of the major provisions of the Energy Charter Treaty, including the provisions on Transit. Through the EU, we continue to work with Russia towards an agreed text for the Transit Protocol while at the same time emphasising to Russia the importance of open, transparent, efficient and competitive markets at all stages of the energy supply chain as the key to global energy security.
Dr. Howells: The UK remains deeply concerned about Eritreas human rights record. The detention without charge by the Eritrean government of members of minority religious groups, journalists, leading political figures and members of civil society is unacceptable and contravenes international human rights agreements to which Eritrea is a party. We raise our concerns with the Eritrean government at every suitable opportunity. Our new Ambassador in Asmara has done so during his introductory meetings with the Eritrean authorities since his arrival in April 2006. We also work with our EU partners in reminding Eritrea of its human rights obligations including through the ongoing EU/Eritrea Political Dialogue.
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to her answer to the hon. Member for Vauxhall (Kate Hoey), of 28 June
2006, Official Report, column 435W, on the Extradition Treaty, if she will place a copy of the reply in the Library. 
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action she has taken in response to the humanitarian situation in Gaza following the recent Israeli military action. 
Dr. Howells: We have serious concerns about the humanitarian situation in Gaza. Restoring electricity and water supplies and access for humanitarian organisations are a vital priority. On 25 June and 6 July, my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary raised our concerns about the current situation with Israeli Foreign Minister Livni and Palestinian President Abbas. On 10 July, our Ambassador in Tel Aviv raised our concerns about the destruction of infrastructure with Israeli Prime Minister Olmerts Foreign Policy Advisor. We have also raised this with the Israel Defence Force.
The Israeli Cabinet agreed on 2 July to take steps to ease the humanitarian situation, including by opening the Karni commercial crossing point between Gaza and Israel for 150 trucks a day carrying food, fuel and medical supplies, and providing power through Israeli grids. We urge Israel to take further such action and allow the full provision of basic services to the Palestinian people.
Mr. Hoon: We have a number of concerns about the human rights situation in Haiti, many of which are linked to the political instability and violence that the country has experienced in recent years. Several of the allegations of abuse relate to actions by the police and the judicial system. These include excessive use of force, involvement in kidnappings, detainment without trial, existence of political prisoners and violence against women. Supporting the reform of the police, prisons and judicial system is therefore a major priority for the UN Stabilisation Mission in Haiti. The determination expressed by the recently elected President Préval to tackle human rights problems in Haiti has been encouraging.
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