The Minister for the Middle East (Dr. Kim Howells): With the support of Her Majesty's Government, the United Nations Security Council on 14 October 2006 unanimously adopted UNSCR 1718 (2006) under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. The Security Council's rapid and decisive action, in response to DPRK's nuclear test on 9 October, sends a strong signal to the DPRK Government that the international community will not tolerate its irresponsible and provocative actions.
The resolution is targeted at stopping the DPRK's WMD and missile programmes and changing the behaviour of the regime in Pyongyang. We now expect the DPRK to comply with the resolution and return to the six party talks without pre-conditions. If it does comply fully with the resolution's provisions and if the talks resume successfully, the UK would expect the Security Council to lift the measures imposed by the resolution.
The resolution backs these demands by imposing sanctions against the DPRK. All states have a legal obligation to comply. The individual sanctions comprise an assets freeze and travel ban on individuals and entities involved in or supporting DPRK's nuclear and ballistic-missile programmes; a ban on making funds available to those individuals and entities; a ban on the export or supply of certain substantial military items, nuclear materials, missiles and sensitive technologies; the export of luxury goods; the provision of any technical assistance, training or other advice in relation to the military or nuclear/ballistic-missile items and the procurement of any of the sensitive items so that DPRK can not export proliferation-sensitive technologies to other countries. The resolution also includes a provision calling upon states to inspect cargo going to and from DPRK subject to action being in conformity with international law and member states' own national laws, where such action is necessary to prevent illicit trafficking in prohibited goods and materials.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health (Mr. Ivan Lewis):
A report was commissioned of the Chief Medical Officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, by the then Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health, my hon Friend for South Thanet (Dr. Ladyman), and the then Minister of State for Children, Young People
and Families, Department for Education and Skills, my right. hon Friend the Member for Barking (Margaret Hodge).
The Chief Medical Officer was asked to consider the role of medical expert witnesses in relation to family law cases and in particular to examine the experts participation throughout the process, and the competencies needed; to examine evidence of best practice for expert witnesses; to identify a template and portfolio of medical skills by which a practitioner may be regarded as competent to offer evidence, and to advise on a sustainable supply of competent, quality-assured expert medical witnesses.
Sir Liam reported to Ministers at the Department of Health and the Department for Education and Skills in 2005, in his independent capacity as Chief Medical Officer for England and chief medical advisor to the United Kingdom Government. I have been considering the next steps, in consultation with the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Education and Skills, my hon. Friend the Member for Gloucester (Mr. Dhanda) and the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs, and we are pleased to announce that we have decided Sir Liam's report should form the basis for a consultation document, and be published for a period of public consultation. The report has been placed in the Library and is available on the Department's website at: http://www.dh.gov.uk/Consultations/LiveConsultations/fs/en.
It is of paramount importance that we secure medical expertise in family law proceedings in the interests of children and families whose future lives depend upon the integrity and quality of judgments delivered in public law Children Act cases. I hope and expect that the consultation process will draw responses from the widest spectrum of interested parties and organisations who are affected by, and who work with and within the court system.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health (Mr. Ivan Lewis): On 5 June I was pleased to announce new funding of £27 million spread over three years for children's hospice services. Applications for the Children's Hospice and Children's Hospice at Home Grant have now been considered by a group which included key stakeholders and I am pleased to announce that 35 hospice services successfully applied for grants and will benefit from this funding. The payments will be made as soon as possible.
At the same time as announcing this grant I announced a review of children's hospice services and subsequently announced in a written ministerial statement on 18 September that the review had been extended to consider the long term sustainability of children's palliative care services and funding more generally. I am pleased to announce that Professor Sir Alan Craft and Ms Sue Killen have agreed to lead this important review. The consultation phase of this review commenced in October and contributions are being sought. Contact can be made with the review team at email@example.com. I expect the review to be completed by spring 2007.
The Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Nationality (Mr. Liam Byrne): Today the Government publish a consultation paper on a new charging regime for immigration and nationality fees, meeting our commitments to consult on charging for the new points based system and significant changes to visa fees, and to support the boost to our border security and enforcement capability set out in the IND review last July.
Migration and tourism benefit Britain greatly. But to continue to welcome legitimate migrants, we need an immigration system that is fair and effective. The integrity of the immigration system depends on robust borders, with effective security overseas and in the UK ensuring and enforcing compliance with our immigration laws. As the Home Office implements the measures outlined in the IND Review, and improved controls and measures are introduced overseas and in-country by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Home Office jointly, we need to consider how immigration and nationality services are paid for and whether our charging strategy should better reflect the end-to-end cost of the whole immigration system. We want improved enforcement of a fair and effective immigration system. We believe that it is right that a greater contribution towards the costs of maintaining such a system should fall to those for whom immigration to our country brings benefits and rewards.
The Government are committed to boosting Britain's economy by bringing the right skills from around the world and ensuring that it is easy to visit legally. We want to continue to welcome the holidaymakers, visitors, business people and students who come here, recognizing the valuable contribution they make to economic growth and the way that they enrich our society through cultural exchange.
The consultation paper sets out some options on how we charge for our immigration and nationality services. We want a genuine debate on the most appropriate way to charge, and hope that key stakeholders and members of the public engage with this consultation process. We will be holding a number of stakeholder events throughout the consultation period in order to get the views and ideas of as many people as possible.
The Minister for Policing, Security and Community Safety (Mr. Tony McNulty):
Following the decision to abandon plans for police force mergers in the immediate future, I agreed in principle to provide police authorities with assistance towards the additional costs incurred through the preparatory work they had carried out. The Home Office invited claims for the marginal costs incurred and these have now been received from all authorities.
The Metropolitan Police Service and City of London Police have claimed no additional costs.
the affordability of the total amount of money to be paid out;
where costs have been incurred by individual forces or authorities on behalf of others;
specific advice given to individual police forces and police authorities to make financial commitments, including an undertaking to provide additional funds to support the work of the pilot strategic force merger of Lancashire and Cumbria Constabularies.
Lancashire and Cumbria Police Authorities, because their claims include Joint Programme Office commitments undertaken on specific advice from the Home Office who also undertook to meet the exceptional start-up costs associated with the pioneer status of this merger group;
Lincolnshire Police Authority, because their claim includes premises costs on behalf of their merger group incurred on specific advice from the Home Office;
Dorset Police Authority, because their claim is made on behalf of the 5 South-West region forces and authorities (Avon and Somerset, Devon and Cornwall, Dorset, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire).
Forces and Authorities will be notified of the amounts allocated to them and asked to provide a confirmation that the amounts claimed have been stated in accordance with the terms of the original invitation.
|Police Authority||Amount Sought||Payment to be made|
|*Legal costs of judicial review proceedings will not be met by the Home Office.|
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