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Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether Iranian nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili and EU High Representative Javier Solana have agreed to a fresh round of talks in December; and if he will make a statement. 
David Miliband: No meeting has been agreed for December. Javier Solana met Saeed Jalili on 30 November in London. He described the meeting as disappointing. Accordingly, on the basis of the agreement I reached with my E3+3 colleagues in New York on 28 September, our Political Directors met in Paris on 1 December and agreed to prepare a new sanctions resolution to submit to the UN Security Council.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress has been made in the talks between EU high representative Javier Solana and the Iranian nuclear negotiator towards meeting the mandatory UN requirement that Iran suspends the proliferation-sensitive aspects of its nuclear programme; and if he will make a statement. 
David Miliband: Javier Solana met Iran's nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili on 30 November. Dr. Solana's staff reported to E3+3 Political Directors on 1 December that the meeting was disappointing. Accordingly, in line with the agreement I reached with my E3+3 colleagues in New York on 28 September, Political Directors agreed to prepare a new sanctions resolution to submit to the UN Security Council.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when the next meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Permanent Five Security Council members and Germany to agree a new Security Council Resolution on Iran is expected to take place; and if he will make a statement. 
David Miliband: E3+3 Political Directors and Foreign Ministers are in regular touch. I agreed with my E3+3 colleagues in New York on 28 September that we would seek a vote on a new UN Security Council sanctions resolution against Iran unless both Mohammed El Baradei and Javier Solana reported a positive outcome from their dealings with the Iranians. Dr. El Baradei reported on 15 November. His report was mixed, but made clear that the International Atomic Energy Agency's visibility of Iran's nuclear programme was diminishing. Dr. Solana's staff reported to Political Directors on 1 December and said that Solana had found his 30 November meeting with Saeed Jalili disappointing. Accordingly, Political Directors met in Paris on 1 December and agreed to prepare a new sanctions resolution. I will continue to stay in touch with my E3+3 colleagues on the subject.
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) how many of his Department's personnel were assigned to the British provincial reconstruction team in (a) Basra and (b) Lashkar Gah in each year since 2005; what contact each team has with local people on reconstruction issues; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what contacts his Department's personnel assigned to the British provincial reconstruction team in (a) Basra and (b) Lashkar Gah have with local people on reconstruction issues; and if he will make a statement; 
Dr. Howells: The UK employs a broad range of civilian staff in support of the Governments of Iraq and Afghanistan to help develop a stable and secure environment in both countries. The Basra provincial reconstruction team (PRT) was formally established in April 2006 along with PRTs in other provinces. Since this time, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has assigned one permanent member of staff and three consultants on contract to the PRT. Nine local people have been employed as contract staff. The Department for International Development (DFID) has assigned one permanent member of staff and 12 consultants, although no more than seven DFID consultants have provided capacity building support at any one time.
Activities covered by the PRT staff in both Iraq and Afghanistan include work in governance, rule of law, reconstruction and economic development. The Lashkar Gah PRT also covers counter narcotics activities. During the period 2006 to 2008, DFID is committing £7 million to quick impact projects in Helmand for reconstruction and development projects. The PRT in Helmand has issued 91 contracts in Lashkar Gah and these are delivered through local business, suppliers and non-governmental organisations.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Iraqi contracted staff there are who meet the criteria for ex gratia assistance and who work or have worked for the UK Government in Iraq (a) under the direct authority of the Basra provincial reconstruction team, (b) for the British civilian police mission or for international contractors engaged by the Government to carry out the police training programme and (c) for the Department for International Development's (i) Centre of Government, (ii) Ministry of Interior Capacity Building, (iii) Civil Society, (iv) Economic Reform and (v) Infrastructure Services and Governorate Capacity-building Programme; and if he will make a statement. 
Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 22 November 2007, Official Report, columns 1039-40W, on Iraq: oil, whether he takes into account maximising the revenues for central government in Iraq when urging Iraqi Ministers and officials to consider the benefit of a broad range of contract types. 
Dr. Howells: We have not taken account of maximising revenues when providing advice to the Government of Iraq. That is a sovereign matter for the Iraqis. UK advice has focused on the need to consider a range of oil contract options, consistent with international best practice, to meet the varied conditions and circumstances in Iraq.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 12 November 2007, Official Report, columns 39-40W, on Iraq: resettlement, how many locally employed staff in Iraq have been made redundant or have had to resign from their job because of what the Government assesses to be exceptional circumstances who had (a) attained and (b) not attained 12 months or more continuous service in each year since March 2003. 
Dr. Howells: The Government have employed many thousands of local staff in Iraq since 2003, many for short periods of time. Before the introduction of the policy set out in my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary's written ministerial statements of 9 October 2007, Official Report, columns 27-28WS and 30 October 2007, Official Report, columns 30-33WS, information on redundancies and resignations was not held centrally, and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Under the new policy, serving staff who are made redundant, or resign due to what we judge to be exceptional circumstances, can apply for assistance as set out in my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary's written ministerial statements of 9 and 30 October 2007, provided that they meet the eligibility criteria. Serving staff are defined as those who were in our employ on or after 8 August 2007, and comprehensive records on redundancies and resignations are therefore held from that date. Since then, two locally engaged staff have resigned due to what we judged to be exceptional circumstances. Both had completed more than twelve months service. 33 have been made redundant.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions the Government have had with the Israeli Government on the movement of Palestinians across borders. 
Dr. Howells: The implementation of the 2005 Agreement on Movement and Access stalled following the election of Hamas in January 2006. We continue to call on both the Israelis and the Palestinians to implement the agreement. We have repeatedly raised our concerns about movement and access with the Government of Israel. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary raised our concerns about movement and access on his recent visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories from 17 to 19 November.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions have taken place between the British and Israeli Governments on dismantling check points. 
Dr. Howells: We remain concerned about the movement restrictions in the west bank. Israel has a right to protect its citizens from terrorist attack, but also a duty to ensure the effect of its security measures on the Palestinian population are minimised. We will continue to raise this concern at all levels with the Israeli government. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary discussed movement and access issues during his recent visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories from 17 to 19 November.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions have taken place between the British and Israeli Governments on the Israeli security wall. 
Dr. Howells: We regularly raise our concerns about the routing of the barrier with the Israeli Government and will continue to do so. We fully recognise Israel's right to self-defence but the barrier's route should be on or behind the green line, and not on occupied territory. Construction of the barrier on Palestinian land is illegal and is particularly damaging around east Jerusalem where it threatens to divide the west bank in two.
Dr. Starkey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what risk assessment his Department has undertaken in relation to the acquisition of properties by UK citizens in (a) Northern Cyprus and (b) illegal Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. 
Mr. Jim Murphy:
Our high commission in Nicosia recognises that there is a risk in relation to the acquisition of properties by UK nationals in the north of Cyprus. This is reflected in the travel advice for
Cyprus given on the Foreign and Commonwealth Offices website and the answers to Frequently Asked Questions that are sent to inquirers on request. This advice is reproduced as follows:
Property issues are closely linked to the political situation. There are a number of potential practical, financial and legal implications, particularly for those considering buying property in the north. These relate to the non-recognition of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, the suspension of EU law in northern Cyprus, the possible consequences for property of a future settlement, and the many thousands of claims to ownership from people displaced in 1974. There is also a risk that, as a result of the disputed ownership of many of the properties, purchasers could face legal proceedings in the courts of the Republic of Cyprus, as well as attempts to enforce judgments from these courts elsewhere in the EU, including the UK.
Dr. Starkey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on how many occasions UK citizens have sought advice from his Department in relation to property disputes in (a) Northern Cyprus and (b) illegal Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories in the last five years. 
Mr. Jim Murphy: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has not kept a record of the number of occasions UK citizens have sought advice in relation to property disputes in northern Cyprus over the last five years. The FCO does, however, receive a significant number of inquiries from members of the public relating to property in northern Cyprus. The FCO is not able to directly intervene in private property disputes. However, we continue to warn potential purchasers of the risks of purchasing property in northern Cyprus, both through our online travel adviceavailable at www.fco.gov.uk;and in response to inquiries from the public. We also advise UK citizens in the travel advice section of our website to seek qualified legal advice from a source that is independent of the seller before purchasing property in Cyprus. Similarly, should a dispute occur as a result of a property transaction, we advise members of the public to seek qualified independent legal advice on their rights and methods of redress.
We are not aware of any occasions in which UK citizens have sought advice from the FCO on property disputes in Israeli settlements in the last five years. The Government do not advise or encourage individuals, companies or organisations to market or sell property in the settlements.
Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations were made to the Government of Saudi Arabia on human rights in Saudi Arabia on the occasion of the recent official Saudi visit to the United Kingdom. 
Dr. Howells: The Roadmap is clear that Israel should freeze all settlement activity including the natural growth of existing settlements, and dismantle all outposts built since former Prime Minister Sharon's election in March 2001. Settlement building is contrary to international law and is an obstacle to peace. This has been our consistent position and we will continue to raise this with the Israeli government.
Kate Hoey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will take steps to ensure that the situation in Zimbabwe will be on the formal agenda of the EU/AU summit in Lisbon. 
Meg Munn: We have taken steps to ensure that Zimbabwe will be discussed at the EU-Africa summit. The EU common position stipulates that an exemption to the restrictions on President Mugabe's travel to the EU can only be made if the meeting he attends includes a political dialogue that directly promotes democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Zimbabwe. As a consequence Zimbabwe and its appalling human rights situation will be raised.
Mr. Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much funding his Department will provide to match the £280 million for specialist short breaks for disabled children from the Department for Children, Schools and Families, as stated in the pre-Budget report, comprehensive spending review, Chapter 5. 
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the annual budget of the (a) Healthcare Commission and (b) Commission for Social Care Inspection have been over the last five years. 
|Department of Health (DH) revenue||DH capital charges||Income||Total budget||DH capital|
|(1)( )Commission for Health Improvement (CHI) existed with a budget of £35 million revenue. HC took over some of CHIs functions and was being set up in 2003-04.|
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