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Human Rights: Sanctions and Dialogue

Lord Blaker asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Scotland of Asthal: The UK currently implements mandatory UN sanctions in relation to Iraq, Angola (UNITA), Liberia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Afghanistan (the Taliban), Ethiopia, Eritrea and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. UN sanctions against Libya have been suspended.

In addition, we implement EU sanctions in relation to Afghanistan, Bosnia, Burma, China, Croatia, the DRC, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Libya and Sudan.

The UK also implements the OSCE arms embargo on Azerbaijan and Armenia, and national arms embargoes on Iran and Zimbabwe.

The sanctions are imposed on various grounds, for example as a response to a conflict which constitutes a threat to international peace and security.

We have some concerns about the human rights situation in most of these countries.

Lord Blaker asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Scotland of Asthal: Wherever developments give rise to human rights concerns, we take every realistic, responsible step to pursue those concerns. This means we discuss human rights issues with the majority of countries in the world as the need arises. We do not keep a fixed list of countries that we engage with in order to promote human rights. We follow closely the full range of human rights issues in each country and raise human rights with other governments in response to developments. Nor do we adopt a one-size-fits-all approach to responding to human rights concerns. We take the approach most

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likely to help the people whose rights have been abused, and engage with other governments whenever and wherever that can contribute to improvements on the ground.

Government Annual Report

Lord Sewel asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When they will publish the Government's annual report.[HL3365]

The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Jay of Paddington): The Government's annual report was published today. Copies have been placed in the Libraries of the House and are available in the Vote Office.

Hereditary Peers Sitting in the House of Lords

Lord Monson asked the Leader of the House:

    How many hereditary peers (of any category) were entitled to sit and vote in the House of Lords in July 1999 are still entitled (however now designated) to sit and vote in the House of Lords in July 2000; what proportion they form of the hereditary peers who had taken the Oath and were not on leave of absence in July 1999; and what proportion they form of the current House.[HL3176]

Baroness Jay of Paddington: There are presently 109 hereditary peers entitled to sit in the House of Lords, 92 under the House of Lords Act and 17 through the conferment of life peerages. They represent about 18.5 per cent of hereditary peers who had taken the Oath and were not on leave of absence in July 1999 and form 15.5 per cent of the current House.

Tobin Tax

Lord Jenkins of Putney asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will consider adopting the Tobin Tax Initiative to enable the maintenance of a comprehensive welfare state.[HL3193]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The Government support the principle of stable international financial markets. However, it would be practically impossible to achieve global coverage and there would be huge scope for avoidance. The Government believe the reforms to the international financial architecture, as set out in the G7 Finance Ministers' report from Cologne last June, can better achieve stable capital flows. A measure such as the Tobin tax could also introduce economic distortions to the international financial system.

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Afro-Caribbean and Asian Population Numbers in UK

The Earl of Listowel asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What percentage of the population of the United Kingdom is composed of:

    (a) men of Afro-Caribbean ethnic origin;

    (b) women of Afro-Caribbean ethnic origin;

    (c) men of Asian ethnic origin; and

    (d) women of Asian ethnic origin.[HL3253]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter to the Earl of Listowel from the National Statistician and Registrar General for England and Wales, Office for National Statistics, Mr Len Cook, dated 13 July 2000.

As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent Question on the proportions of men and women of Afro-Caribbean and Asian ethnic origin in the United Kingdom.

Annual estimates of the population by ethnic group are only available for residents in private households. They are made using data from the Labour Force Survey (LFS), a sample survey in which respondents living in private households are asked to select from a list of ethnic groups the one to which they consider they belong.

The attached table gives the estimated numbers of men and women aged 16 and over in minority ethnic groups that include those of Afro-Caribbean and Asian origin--and the percentages they form of the population of men and women aged 16 and over in private households in the United Kingdom.

Estimated minority ethnic populations, living in private households, 1999, United Kingdom

Estimated number (thousands) aged 16 and over in private households Percentages
Ethnic groupMenWomenMenWomen
Total ethnic groups (including White)(1)22,69423,794100.0100.0
Black--Other (non-mixed)(2)30360.10.2
Other--Asian (non-mixed)74930.30.4


Labour Force Survey.

(1) Includes Not Stated.

(2) Black--Other (non-mixed) cannot be further disaggregated and may include a number of people who are not of Afro-Caribbean ethnic group.

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Financial Services and Markets Bill

The Earl of Northesk asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Written Answers by Lord McIntosh of Haringey on 24 May (WA 86) and 7

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    June (WA 159), whether any public Bill in the last 30 years has been subject to more government amendments in each House (both tabled and made) than the Financial Services and Markets Bill; and, if so, which Bills.[HL3251]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: This information could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

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