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1991 - PMQT Written Answers 25th February 1991

Below is the text of the written answers relating to Prime Minister's Question Time from 25th February 1991.


PRIME MINISTER:

Norwegian Prime Minister

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister what was discussed at his meeting with his Norwegian counterpart on 13 February.

The Prime Minister : I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave him on 21 February at column 223.


Street Lighting

Dr. Twinn : To ask the Prime Minister if he will seek to improve co- ordination between the Home Office and Departments of Environment and Transport to identify where early action can be taken to reduce the public's fear of, and to help prevent, crime by improving the standard of street lighting in towns; and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister : The Home Office has just received a first draft of a report of a major research study undertaken by the University of Southampton to assess the impact of improved street lighting on crime and the fear of crime in the London borough of Wandsworth. The results are being considered. The Home Office is also engaged in a monitoring exercise on the link between lighting improvements and crime in four urban areas. When all the relevant information is to hand Home Office Ministers will consider, in conjunction with other Departments as appropriate, what further action is necessary to try and reduce the public's fear of crime.


German Chancellor

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister what matters were discussed during his meeting with Chancellor Kohl in Bonn on 11 February.

The Prime Minister : Chancellor Kohl and I discussed a number of current issues, including the Gulf, relations with the Soviet Union and European Community affairs. I look forward to developing our close relationship.


Nuclear Accidents

Dr. David Clark : To ask the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on his progress in preparing a contingency plan to deal with the effects of any future nuclear accident overseas following the parliamentary answer to the hon. Member for Bedfordshire, North (Sir T. Skeet) on 30 June 1987, Official Report, columns 65-67.

The Prime Minister : My right hon. Friend the Member for Cirencester and Tewkesbury (Mr. Ridley), the then Secretary of State for the Environment, announced in January 1988 that proposals for implementing the national response plan had been finalised. Details of the proposals have been published in a booklet : "The National Response Plan and Radiation Incident Monitoring Network (RIMNET). A Statement of Proposals" published by HMSO, copies of which have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

The radiation monitors for the first phase of the RIMNET system have been in operation since June 1988, and I understand that my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment will be making an announcement shortly with regard to the award of the contract for installing phase 2 of RIMNET.


Electricity Prices

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Prime Minister whether his office has been consulted about the proposed 13 per cent. increase in domestic electricity prices.

The Prime Minister : It is for the Director General of Electricity Supply to receive and consider the companies' proposals, and to satisfy himself that they are consistent with the companies' licence requirements.


The Gulf

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister what communications he, or his officials, had with the deputy director-general of the BBC on 13 February concerning BBC news coverage of the casualties caused to Iraqi civilians by allied air raids on Baghdad.

The Prime Minister : There is contact on a regular basis between my office and the media on a variety of subjects, including the coverage of the Gulf conflict.

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister if President Bush contacted Her Majesty's Government prior to his speech in Massachusetts on 15 February calling for the overthrow of President Saddam Hussein; and what is the Government's policy in relation to the President of Iraq.

The Prime Minister : The Government's policy towards Iraq is to secure full, immediate and unconditional compliance with the Security Council resolutions.

Mr. Latham : To ask the Prime Minister whether he will make a statement on the progress of military action to liberate Kuwait in accordance with resolutions of the United Nations Security Council.

The Prime Minister : The military action to free Kuwait is making steady progress, while attempting to avoid civilian casualties so far as possible. The forces of the multinational coalition deserve great credit for their performance.