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1991 - PMQT Written Answers 23rd April 1991

Below is the text of the written answers relating to Prime Minister's Question Time from 23rd April 1991.


PRIME MINISTER:

Public Holidays

Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman : To ask the Prime Minister if he will bring forward proposals to abolish the May day holiday in England and declare St. George's day a public holiday instead.

The Prime Minister : I have no plans to do so, though I recognise that this is a holiday that many people disapprove of.


Engagements

Mr. Harry Greenway : To ask the Prime Minister if he will list his official engagements for 23 April.

The Prime Minister : This morning I had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others. In addition to my duties in the House, I shall be having further meetings later today.


The Gulf

Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on his policy in relation to long-term coalition presence in the Gulf.

The Prime Minister : We have made it clear that it is for the states of the region to take the lead in establishing lasting security arrangements for the Gulf, We stand ready to play our part in underpinning such arrangements, if requested, but we have no intention of maintaining a permanent ground force presence in the Gulf.

Mr. Ralph Howell : To ask the Prime Minister what plans he has to bring war charges against Iraqi leaders ; and if he will make a statement on British policy on this issue.

The Prime Minister : Iraqi leaders bear personal responsibility under international law for their actions. This principle was reiterated in United Nations Security Council Resolution 674. In the case of both the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Genocide Convention of 1948, Iraqi leaders can, in law, be brought to trial before a national court or international tribunal. We and our EC partners have asked the United Nations Secretary-General to investigate how this might be achieved.