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5 Mar 2007 : Column 1642Wcontinued
Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on what date (a) Ministers and (b) officials in his Department were first informed that a video tape existed of the United States aerial attack which killed Lance-Corporal Hull. 
[holding answer 26 February 2007]: I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer given on 20 February 2007, Official Report, column 370W. The
handling of the audio/video recording in question is being investigated. I will write to the hon. Gentleman when the investigation is complete and place a copy of the letter in the Library of the House.
Michael Fabricant: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what estimate his Department has made of the number of servicemen (a) killed and (b) injured in Iraq by weapons of Iranian origin since the occupation of Iraq began; 
(2) what estimate his Department has made of the number of British servicemen (a) killed and (b) injured in Iraq by weapons of Iranian origin since the occupation of Iraq began. 
Des Browne: The Ministry of Defence does not have an estimate of the number of British servicemen, or other servicemen, who have been killed or injured by weapons of Iranian origin since the beginning of Operation Telic. However, support from within Iran, including by the Quds Force, does go to groups who are attacking coalition forces and fuelling the sectarian violence in Iraq. In our assessment some of the Improvised Explosive Devices that are being used against our troops use technology that originates from Iran.
The Government of Iraq have made it clear that they will not tolerate Iranian activity that undermines the prospects for a secure, stable and democratic Iraq.
Derek Conway: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has spent on the provision of security services by private contractors in Iraq; and what proportion of his Departments spending in that country such expenditure represents. 
Des Browne: For the purposes of this response I have taken the phrase security services to mean force protection services. The Ministry of Defence has not incurred any expenditure on the provision of such services by private contractors in Iraq.
Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what action his Department is taking to protect the employment rights of the locally engaged Gibraltarian workforce at the dockyard. 
Mr. Ingram: The Ministry of Defence does not employ any locally engaged personnel in the dockyard at Gibraltar.
Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to introduce missile-to-missile defences in the United Kingdom in 2007 to 2012. 
Des Browne: I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave on 26 February 2007, Official Report, column 601, to the hon. Member for Scarborough and Whitby (Mr. Goodwill).
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 19 February 2007, Official Report, column 312W, on NATO, what assessment he has made of progress in the continuing transformation of NATO's capabilities. 
Des Browne: NATOs ongoing transformation process is vital for ensuring that the alliance has the modern expeditionary capabilities it needs to undertake the full range of potential missions, including collective defence and crisis response operations. Building on the decisions taken at the Prague and Istanbul summits, much progress has already been made to make alliance forces more capable and more usableexemplified by the development of the NATO Response Force, which was declared fully operational at the Riga summit last November. Other important new initiatives agreed at Riga were to increase the strategic lift available to allies; enhance co-operation between special forces; improve logistics support; develop a more comprehensive approach to operations; further streamline NATOs command structures; and strengthen NATOs ability to work with those current and potential contributors to NATO operations and missions, who share its interests and values.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 29 January 2007, Official Report, column 690W, on naval deployment (Gulf), what changes were made to the UK naval posture in the Gulf region between July 2006 and February 2007. 
Mr. Ingram: There have been a number of changes in the UK Naval presence in the Gulf since July 2006. These have all been part of long-term plans and routine rotations. The naval posture has not changed during this period.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether the costs of building a new uranium processing facility, warhead assembly and disassembly facility, core punch facility, explosives handling facility and material science facilities at the Atomic Weapons Establishment are included in the estimates for (a) the procurement costs in paragraph 5-12 and (b) the in-service costs in paragraph 5-14 of the White Paper, The Future of the United Kingdom's Nuclear Deterrent. 
Des Browne: These facilities are part of the programme of investment in sustaining capabilities at the Atomic Weapons Establishment, both to ensure we can maintain the existing warhead for as long as necessary and to enable us to develop a replacement warhead if that is required. The costs of building, and subsequently operating and maintaining, these facilities are included in the estimates set out in paragraphs 5-13 and 5-14 of the White Paper: The Future of the United Kingdom's Nuclear Deterrent (Cm 6994).
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the process is for the management and control of classified information; and which Minister is responsible for classified information. 
Mr. Ingram: The process for controlling and managing classified information is as follows:
The Ministry of Defence (MOD), in common with other Government Departments, operates a filing system which makes extensive use of registered files. Each file relates to a particular subject, or aspect of a subject, and has a unique identifying reference (normally an alpha/numeric combination).
Material of any classification (from RESTRICTED up to TOP SECRET) which is deemed worthy of retention on a registered file is placed on the file as soon as possible. MOD uses a system of colour coded file covers to denote the different file classifications.
A record is kept of the creation, reproduction, receipt, despatch, movements or disposal of all information marked SECRET and TOP SECRET in an appropriate register held locally by each branch/directorate within the MOD.
Regular, efficient inspections of registers and random spot checks of classified information and registered files constitute the main safeguards of classified information.
These principles apply equally to classified information held on MODs IT systems.
The Minister for the Armed Forces is responsible for the protection of classified information.
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence for what reasons his Department changed the methodology for collating the number of personnel undertaking operations and other military tasks in 2005-06; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Ingram: The methodology for collating numbers of personnel on operations and other military tasks has not changed.
Officials have reviewed the tables in my previous answer of 4 September 2006, Official Report, columns 1682-84W, and established that the answer was incorrect. Annual reports up to 2004-05 should have made clear that the percentages quoted for the Army did include those preparing for or recovering from operations.
Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 23 January 2007, Official Report, column 1636W, on warships; what warships were based at each location in (i) 2004, (ii) 2005 and (iii) 2006; and which are based at each in 2007. 
Mr. Ingram [holding answer 26 February 2007]: The warships currently based at Devonport, Portsmouth and Faslane are as follows:
Detailed information about the base port history of each Royal Navy warship is not held centrally. The figures provided in response to the hon. Gentlemans question of 23 January 2007, Official Report, column 1636W, were the best estimates available at the time. Further work has refined the current position, and is reflected in the information provided. Detailed information for 2004, 2005 and 2006 is, however, not available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Mark Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations she (a) has made and (b) plans to make to the Burmese Government about religious discrimination and restriction in Burma. 
Mr. McCartney: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave the hon. Member for Cheadle (Mark Hunter) on 19 February 2007, Official Report, columns 394-95W.
Mr. Mark Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what her Department's policy is on the merits of a UN Security Council resolution requiring the State Peace and Development Council of Myanmar to cease violation of human rights in that country. 
Mr. McCartney: Our policy is to support all action in the UN, including in the Security Council, which helps to promote reform and positive change and full respect for human rights in Burma, We therefore co-sponsored the UN Security Council Resolution on Burma with the United States which was put to the vote on 12 January. Nine members of the Security Council voted for the Resolution. However, the Resolution was not adopted, as two permanent members of the Security CouncilChina and Russiavoted against, as did South Africa.
Disappointing though this result was, it is important to note that all Security Council members agreed that there were serious issues of concern in Burma. This and the positive votes from a majority of Council partners reflected the international communitys deep concern over the plight of Burmas people. We will continue to work within the UN to ensure that Burma remains on the UN Security Council agenda.
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