|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
|September 2009||Business Administration and Finance||Environment and Land Based Studies||Hair and Beauty Studies||Hospitality||Manufacturing and Product Design|
Local authority funding returns for the Diploma Formula Grant submitted to the DFE in November 2009
Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps his Department plans to take to implement its responsibilities in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; if he will withdraw the reservation and declaration made by his Department to the Convention; and what steps his Department is taking to reduce the number of disabled children educated a long distance away from their homes. 
Sarah Teather [holding answer 15 June 2010]: The UK Government have ratified the convention and we will meet our commitments under it. The previous Government took a reservation and interpretive declaration to article 24, on education, and we currently have no plans to change this.
Section 9 of the Children and Young Persons Act 2008 inserted section 22G into the Children Act 1989 to require local authorities to take steps that secure, so far as reasonably practicable, sufficient accommodation, within the authority's area, which meets the needs of children that the local authority are looking after, and whose circumstances are such that it would be consistent with their welfare for them to be provided with accommodation that is in the authority's area. This will require local authorities to plan strategically to meet the needs of those children. The duty is planned to come into force in April 2011. Statutory guidance was published in March 2010 and can be found at
Tim Loughton: The Department for Education has not yet made a decision on the future of the Youth Opportunity Fund or Youth Capital Fund. The Government are committed to a full comprehensive spending review in the autumn and Ministers will shortly be considering their spending priorities, which will take into account all areas of spending including that for youth activities and facilities.
Mr Jeremy Browne: I raised Burma with ASEAN Ministers at the EU-ASEAN Ministerial on 26 May 2010 at which the Burmese Foreign Minister was present. I made clear that without the release and participation of all political prisoners including Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma's elections will not be free and fair. The subsequent summit statement reflected the EU's concern.
To mark Aung San Suu Kyi's 65th birthday, my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary and I called on the military regime to end her detention. Our ambassador in Rangoon repeatedly raises the need for the release of prisoners of conscience, including Aung San Suu Kyi, with Ministers in the Burmese military Government.
We will continue to raise the plight of Burma's political prisoners including Aung San Suu Kyi through the EU, with Burma's neighbours, and we will highlight the issue in the UN Security Council and UN's human rights bodies. We endorse the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention's recent observation that the ongoing detention of Aung San Suu Kyi is illegal and in violation of international human rights law.
Mr MacShane: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he plans to take to seek to increase the level of access for people in Burma to free media and information networks before the forthcoming election in that country. 
Mr Jeremy Browne: The forthcoming elections are set to be held under deeply oppressive conditions. The Burmese regime limits public access to media information. Election literature is censored and public gatherings, political banners and flags are banned. Most people are unable to access the media to voice political views and those who do so risk draconian measures imposed by the military junta including long prison sentences. Under these conditions, Burma's people will not have reasonable access to free and impartial media.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides funding to the BBC World Service to enable it to run a Burmese service, which provides objective coverage of politics in Burma. BBC World Service reports that it reaches 8.5 million listeners every week inside Burma. Although internet use is limited in Burma, the FCO's digital communications work also plays its part in the flow of information to the country. As elections approach in Burma, the FCO will continue to work closely with the BBC World Service and others to increase access to political information.
Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make it his policy that the EU free trade agreement with Colombia and Peru be subject to ratification in each member state. 
Mr Jeremy Browne: We have pointed out to the Colombian authorities that those charged with crimes should have their legal rights fully respected, including to a fair trial. We have also raised specific cases of concern of people who have been detained for long periods without trial on the charge of rebellion.
Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 15 June 2010, Official Report, columns 353-4, on departmental official cars, what cars and vehicles have been purchased by the Mission in Italy since 12 May 2010. 
Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions his Department has had with the Government of Iran on their record on the protection of human rights in the country. 
Mr Bellingham: We believe that the human rights situation in Iran is deplorable, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office continues to take opportunities to raise human rights with the Government of Iran in both a bilateral context, and with EU partners. In Geneva this month, the Human Rights Council adopted Iran's Universal Periodic Review, at which the UK made a series of statements about our concerns and made recommendations to Iran to improve the human rights situation. The UK also signed up to a cross-regional statement by Norway and signed by 55 other states calling on Iran to improve urgently its human rights record.
Mr Evennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has received from representatives of the Assyrian community in the UK on the current situation in Iraq. 
Mr Bellingham: Foreign and Commonwealth officials in Iraq and London regularly meet representatives of the wider Iraqi Christian community to hear their concerns. On 21 June 2010 our embassy officials in Baghdad met the co-founder of the Assyrian Democratic Movement in the Kurdish region of Iraq.
We urge the Iraqi Government to protect all Iraqi communities, including Christians, and to deal appropriately with those who are found responsible for any acts of violence and intimidation because of political, ethnic or religious affiliation.
Mr Jeremy Browne: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has provided funds for four award schemes: Chevening scholarships, Chevening fellowships, Marshall scholarships (through the Marshall Aid Commemoration Commission) and Commonwealth scholarships (through the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK under the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan). Since 2008-09 the FCO is not funding any new Commonwealth awards (but it is paying the continuing costs of existing scholars). The number of new awards given on each scheme in each of the last 20 years is set out in the following table.
|Chevening scholarships||Chevening fellowships||Marshall scholarships||Commonwealth scholarships|
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|