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Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which wildlife conservation projects on Ministry of Defence sites in (a) the UK, (b) British territories overseas and (c) other countries armed forces personnel have a role in maintaining. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: Service personnel are engaged in numerous conservation projects in the UK and overseas. Full details of all these projects are not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
However, examples of projects can be found in Sanctuary Magazine, the Department's annual conservation journal. Copies of the latest edition of Sanctuary Magazine are available in the Library of the House.
Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the likely reduction in his Department's expenditure as a result of discontinuing publication of defence export delivery statistics by UK Defence Statistics. 
Mr. Quentin Davies: The direct saving to the Department by discontinuing the publication of defence export delivery statistics in UK Defence Statistics will be in the region of £30,000 per annum in staff costs. There are also additional, unquantified savings which have resulted from the avoidance of further work to implement alternative methods to produce these statistics for next year.
Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many civil servants in his Department have been (a) investigated, (b) suspended and (c) dismissed for (i) losing and (ii) deliberately disclosing (A) data stored on departmental equipment and (B) confidential information in each year since 1997. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The information is not held centrally in the form requested. However, records held centrally of civilian staff dismissed since April 2002 include no cases of dismissal specifically for losing or deliberately disclosing data or confidential information.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many staff in his Department undertook courses funded by the Department for (a) undergraduate degrees, (b) postgraduate degrees or diplomas, (c) Masters degrees, (d) MBA degrees and (e) PhD degrees in the last 12 months, broken down by pay band. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: This information is not held centrally in the form provided and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. However, I can say that approximately 430 civilian staff have recorded on the Department's central system over the last year that they are undertaking training leading to a degree.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to the answer of 4 November 2008, Official Report, columns 336-7W, on Government departments: information and communications technology, which IP addresses are used by (a) his Department and (b) computers in the offices of its (i) Ministers, (ii) communications officials and (iii) special advisers. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: To help defend against electronic attack, it is standard good information security practice for corporate IT systems not to publish internal IP addresses. When accessing internet websites, the IP addresses of all of the computers on the MOD's internal office IT system are hidden behind the following IP addresses which are publicly available126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52. These IP addresses are shared with other Government Departments that use the Government Secure Intranet.
Dr. Murrison: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what area in square metres is occupied by each Defence Minister's (a) personnel and (b) private office in (i) any building used by his Department and (ii) his Department's main building. 
|Minister||Private office||Outer office|
|(1) Minister for IDS is currently in temporary accommodation (25m(2) private office, 19m(2) outer office) and the above figures are the size of the permanent location, which will be available in the new year. Note: Approximate areas, based on examination of the electronic copy of the floor plans.|
Mr. Kevan Jones: Although the Government, with the agreement of those concerned, may in exceptional cases decide to publish personal information about individual public servants, the general policy is to treat such information, including about variable pay, as private.
Pay and reward for Permanent Secretaries is considered annually by the Permanent Secretaries' Remuneration Committee and is subject to the rules and regulations governed by the Senior Salaries Review Body (SSRB) and the Cabinet Office. Permanent Secretaries, pay has been constrained by the same centrally imposed ceiling of the senior civil service (SCS) pay bill since the current pay and reward arrangements for the senior civil service changed on 1 April 2002.
Non-consolidated bonus awards paid to the current and previous Permanent Under-Secretaries also fall within the SSRB recommended ceilings for the remainder of the SCS. These ceilings reflect the wider move to reward performance with non-consolidated, rather than consolidated, pay increases.
Mr. Kevan Jones: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence last used a train in the course of his official duties on 28 November 2008 while travelling from London to Leeds to attend a Cabinet meeting. All ministerial travel is undertaken in accordance with the ministerial code.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many individuals have worked in his Department on (a) paid and (b) unpaid work experience or internships in each of the past three years; on average how many hours a week were worked by such people in each year; what types of work each was involved in; what proportion were in full-time education; what proportion did not complete their set period of work experience; and how much those who received remuneration were paid on average per week in each year. 
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the number of people who were working on EU military projects in each of the last five years; and how many such people were British. 
Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what representations he has received on commissioning research into the potential health effects on children and grandchildren of nuclear test veterans of their forebears' exposure to radiation during tests; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: Following an offer I made during the adjournment debate on 22 October 2008, Official R eport, column 417, I met with the hon. Member for Billericay (Mr. Baron) and my hon. Friend the Member for Norwich, North (Dr. Gibson) and members of the British Nuclear Test Veterans Association on 29 October to discuss the possibility of a new MOD-funded study on health experiences particularly in relation to offspring. Officials have been discussing the scientific and ethical issues relevant to such a study with the BNTVA and scientific advisers and I hope to be able to make an announcement in the new year.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent discussions he has had on de-mining operations in the Falkland Islands; when he expects the Falkland Islands to be cleared of mines; what the reasons are for the length of time taken to complete the de-mining operations; and how many people have been injured by landmines in the Falkland Islands in the last 10 years. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth:
Under the Ottawa convention, the UK is required to clear all anti-personnel mines from its territory by March 2019, having recently secured a 10 year extension to the original 2009 deadline. Our request for an extension was based on the Joint UK-Argentine Feasibility Study completed in October 2007 that concluded de-mining is technically feasible but presents significant challenges and would take at least 10 years to complete. Based on the findings of the feasibility study we have recently decided to proceed with the clearance of three mined areas in the Falkland Islands. The variety of terrain they cover will serve as a means of testing the environmental and ecological impact
of de-mining, which are significant factors of concern. The results from these areas will be valuable in informing future work.
In accordance with article 5 of the convention all mined areas have been perimeter marked, regularly monitored and protected by fencing to ensure the effective exclusion of civilians. I am pleased to say that there have been no mine casualties in the 25 years since the conflict.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent discussions he has had with (a) the government of the Falkland Islands and (b) others on the withdrawal of HMS Northumberland from the Falkland Islands; what recent assessment he has made of the security situation in the Falkland Islands; how many troops are stationed in the Falkland Islands; and what plans he has for the redeployment of HMS Northumberland. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The Falkland Islands Government was briefed over the decision to deploy HMS Northumberland on an EU anti-piracy mission off the Horn of Africa and deploy RFA Largs Bay to the South Atlantic. Consultations also took place between my Department and the FCO.
HMS Northumberland is one constituent part only of a comprehensive package of air, land and maritime assets that together maintain our deterrence posture on the Islands. This deterrence force is kept under regular review and can be reinforced quickly should the need arise. In November 2008, there were some 1,300 members of the armed forces based in the Falkland Islands. This figure varies during the year due to individual posting plots and unit moves.
While it is UK Government policy not to comment in detail on the current threat to the Falkland Islands or the future disposition of UK forces, the UK Government remain fully committed to the defence of the South Atlantic Overseas Territories, including the Falkland Islands.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what progress has been made on negotiations with the Government of Iraq on the stationing of British forces in the country after 31 December 2008; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Hutton: The UK and the Government of Iraq are negotiating a legal framework to allow UK forces to continue to provide the assistance requested of us by Iraqi authorities, laying the foundations for a long-term normalised bilateral relationship. Negotiations are continuing and we are aiming to reach an agreement prior to the expiry of UN Security Council Resolution 1790 at the end of 2008. We continue to discuss our respective legal requirements with the US and other coalition partners.
Mr. Hutton: In Iraq, the overall security situation continues to improve, with violence now down to levels last seen in 2003. In Basra, the Iraqi Security Forces are maintaining the significant security gains achieved over the course of 2008.
In Afghanistan, considerable progress has been made but the insurgency remains resilient. The majority of people can go about their daily lives but in certain areas of the country, particularly in the south and east, significant security challenges remain. The Taliban have failed using conventional tactics and are turning to increasingly indiscriminate attacks, which show complete disregard for the safety of the local population.
Mr. Hutton: Since taking up post as Secretary of State for Defence on 3 October 2008, I have visited both Iraq and Afghanistan once, between 18 and 23 October. My predecessor made a number of visits to both countries as detailed in the table:
|Operational visits to Iraq and Afghanistan||Date of visit|
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