|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
We remain extremely concerned about the situation in Darfur. We are making clear to Khartoum, and to others with influence over Sudan, that the Government there must end its military offensive immediately. Rebel militias must also halt their unacceptable attacks in Darfur which are hampering international efforts to supply humanitarian relief. The Government of Sudan and the rebel militia leaders must re-engage on the Darfur Peace Agreement, which represents the only way to secure a lasting peace in Darfur.
We are working with international partners to help secure Sudans co-operation for a UN deployment to Darfur, as mandated by UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1706. We are also working with the UN and international partners to strengthen the African Union force (AMIS) deployed to Darfur until a UN force is deployed. We welcome the African Unions (AU) decision at its 20 September Peace and Security Council meeting to extend the AMIS mandate to the end of the year and to increase the number of troops in Darfur. It is vital that the AU should have enough resources to carry out its task. It is important for the UN to provide material and logistical support, as mandated by UNSCR 1706, as soon as possible, for the Government of Sudan to do all in its power to expedite the deployment of this additional support, and for the Arab League to make good its pledge of financial assistance.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether President Omar al-Bashirs leave is required for the deployment of a United Nations peacekeeping force in Darfur. 
Dr. Howells: UN Security Council resolution 1706 (2006) invited the consent of the Government of Sudan to the deployment of a UN mission. We are working with the UN Secretary-General, our international partners at the Security Council, with the African Union and the League of Arab States to secure that consent. In practice, a UN mission is unlikely to succeed in Darfur unless it has the full co-operation of the Government of Sudan as requested by the Security Council.
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what (a)representations she has made and (b) action she
plans to take to gain the consent of the Sudanese Government for troops to be deployed to Darfur. 
Dr. Howells: The UK co-sponsored UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1706 which was adopted on 31 August. This mandated the deployment of a UN force to Darfur. Since then we have been actively working to build a broad international coalition to persuade President Bashir of the need to agree to a UN force for Darfur.
My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary visited Egypt between 5 and 8 September, where she raised Darfur with President Mubarak, the Egyptian Foreign Minister and the Secretary-General of the Arab League.
My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and my noble Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Lord Triesman of Tottenham, then took the opportunity of meetings during the UN General Assembly ministerial week, 18 to 22 September, in New York to raise Darfur with a broad range of international partners who might be able to influence the Government of Sudan. These included the Foreign Ministers of Russia, China, Egypt, the US and numerous African countries, and also the Secretary-General of the UN. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary took a leading role in a meeting of 15 Foreign Ministers on the subject on 22 September. In all of these meetings Ministers stressed the paramount importance of persuading President Bashir to allow the deployment of a UN force for Darfur.
Our missions overseas are lobbying their host Governments wherever we believe this may make a difference. We have kept in close touch with those visiting Khartoum, including European Commission President Barroso and Development Commissioner Michel, who met President Bashir on 30 September. We will go on maintaining pressure on the Government of Sudan and other parties in Khartoum to cease the armed attacks, implement the Darfur Peace Agreement, support bolstering the African Union force with UN support and accept a transition to a UN force. We encourage others to do the same.
Our embassy in Bangkok continues to monitor the case closely and holds regular senior-level meetings with the Thai department of special investigations in order to update the Jones family on the investigation, most recently on 4 October 2006.
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if she will assess progress
in the peace talks between the Government of South Sudan, the Ugandan Government and the Lords Resistance Army; and whether the British Government have played a role in mediation between the parties. 
Dr. Howells: We welcome the Government of Southern Sudans efforts to mediate a peaceful solution to the long-running conflict in northern Uganda. The Lords Resistance Army (LRA) and the Government of Uganda are both participating in the Juba-based talks process, which remains fragile. But the signing of a cessation of hostilities agreement on 26 August was an encouraging development. This gave some grounds for hope that permanent peace is possible. But it is too early to say that the conflict is over and there may well be some setbacks as the process develops. Both sides will need to show a strong commitment to the mediation process.
We continue to follow events closely. The Governments involved have not made any direct requests for assistance, and we have not played a role in the mediation. We, along with other partners, expect to receive a request from the UN for financial assistance for the talks shortly.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment she has made of the recent truce between the Lord's Resistance Army and the Ugandan Government; and what support the Government are prepared to commit to ensuring this truce is maintained. 
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs in her dealings with which countries consideration has been given to United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325. 
Dr. Howells: In the context of regular discussions on conflict-related issues, officials within the Foreign and Commonwealth Office engage with interlocutors from a wide range of countries bilaterally and within the UN, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe and the EU on how nations can individually and collectively support the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325.
Bilateral exchanges specifically on UNSCR 1325 have been held with Sweden, Canada and Norway. We have exchanged ideas, best practice and lessons learnt on the development of a National Action Plan and on how we can effectively mainstream gender into all aspects of humanitarian, conflict, defence and diplomacy work.
In our regular contacts with troop contributing countries to UN missions we highlight the importance of ensuring that training of all military and police, and in particular training of those who are to be deployed on international peacekeeping operations contains suitable elements on gender awareness and on
combating sexual abuse. Officials in posts overseas also lobby locally to explain the UK approach to the implementation of UNSCR 1325 and to encourage their host governments to adopt a similar concerted approach.
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if she will make a statement on the Government's progress in implementing (a) United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 since its adoption in October 2000 and (b) the Government's Action Plan on Resolution 1325. 
Dr. Howells: The UK has used it Presidencies of the UN Security Council to support the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325. Specific examples of UK activity include UK officials actively seeking opportunities for appropriate references to gender concerns in all UN peacekeeping mandatesrecent examples can be found in UN resolutions on peacekeeping operations in Liberia and Sudan; awareness raising events on various issues including mainstreaming gender throughout the Security Council's protection-based work, strengthening the UN's response to gender based violence in conflict and post conflict situations and the development of National Action Plans; providing financial support to the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO's) Mainstreaming a Gender Perspective in Multi-dimensional Peace Operations which involved the development of a virtual resource centre for those involved in peace operations to draw on; and UK participation in a Joint Donor Review Mission to four UN Peacekeeping Missions to assess the effectiveness and impact of DPKO's gender work and to identify lessons learned and best practice.
As part of our commitment to UNSCR 1325, the UK has developed a national action plan to support implementation of this important resolution. The action plan links humanitarian, conflict, defence and diplomacy work, all-important to conflict resolution and peace building. Recent examples of activity under the action plan include providing training to all desk officers in the UK Mission in New York to familiarise them with the provisions of UNSCR 1325 and to demonstrate concrete ways in which UNSCR 1325 can be incorporated into resolutions, reporting and peacekeeping mandates; a seminar at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for UK based staff aimed at raising their awareness of UNSCR 1325 and explain what the UK is doing to support its implementation and what can be done further; the Ministry of Defence is currently carrying out an audit of its Peace Support Operations training to ensure that it deals adequately with the areas covered by UNSCR 1325; and the Department for International Development has recently participated in a workshop organised by the United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) Bureau of Crisis Prevention and Recovery in support of UNDP's efforts to mainstream gender throughout their activities.
The UK is also working closely with the non-governmental organisation Working Group on Women, Peace and Security in New York to support their October Advocacy Programme which will
coincide with the sixth anniversary celebrations of UNSCR 1325. We are co-hosting a side event with the group and the Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women on the development of National Action Plans.
The Global and Africa Conflict Prevention Pools and Global Opportunities Fund continue to provide the key UK funding mechanism for supporting women and conflict projects around the globe through its many strategies. For example, the Government have co-funded, through the Global Conflict Prevention Pool, a conference on peace and security: implementing UNSCR 1325. The conference was held at Wilton Park between 30 May and 2 June 2006 and provided a forum for discussion on implementation of UNSCR 1325, drawing together policy makers and practitioners in order to find constructive ways forward.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the abortion rate was per 1,000 women aged 15 to 49 years in England in (a) 1976, (b) 1979, (c) 1983, (d) 1987, (e) 1992, (f) 1995, (g) 1996, (h) 1997, (i) 1998, (j) 1999, (k) 2000 and (l) 2001. 
Caroline Flint: This information is contained within table 1 of the Statistical Bulletin 2006/01, Abortion Statistics, England and Wales: 2005. This table gives the abortion rates per 1,000 women aged 15-44 from 1968 to 2005. The standard age group for fertility and conception rates is for women aged 15-44 years.
Ms Rosie Winterton: The North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust has entered into independent mediation in order to attempt to resolve the industrial dispute with ambulance technicians in Cheshire and Merseyside.
No specific assessment has been carried out of the potential impacts on the bingo industry of the smoke free provisions within the Health Act 2006. The overall costs and benefits of the Health Act are set out in the regulatory impact assessment which is available in the Library or on the Departments website at: www.dh.gov.uk/PublicationsAndStatistics/Legislation/
RegulatoryImpactAssessment/RegulatoryImpact AssessmentArticle/fs/en?CONTENT_ID=4121917 &chk=sUauD/.
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average cost was of an uncomplicated delivery in each birthing unit in Hampshire in the latest period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The specific information requested is not held centrally. However, the table gives the average cost of delivery healthcare resource groups (HRGs) for national health service trusts in Hampshire from 2004-2005.
|Reference costs (£)|
|Normal delivery without complications||Assisted delivery without complications||Caesarean Section without complications|
Mr. Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what discussions there have been between her Department and the Kingston Hospital NHS Trust concerning the proposal to switch secondary and tertiary cancer services from the Hammersmith Hospitals NHS Trust to The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust; and if she will make a statement. 
The proposal to switch secondary and tertiary cancer services from the Hammersmith Hospitals NHS Trust to The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust is a local matter. It is not for the Department to intervene in such issues. The provision of local health services now rests with local NHS organisations, who, with their specific local knowledge and expertise, are best placed to plan and develop services according to the needs of local people.
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average cost was of delivering an episode of care in (a) 1979, (b) 1997 and (c) the most recent period for which figures are available, at constant prices. 
The cost per episode of care for 1997-98 should read £1,131 not £1,159 as printed.
The cost per episode of care for 2003-04 should read £990 not £1,200 as printed.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|