To match an exact phrase, use quotation marks around the search term. eg. "Parliamentary Estate". Use "OR" or "AND" as link words to form more complex queries.


Keep yourself up-to-date with the latest developments by exploring our subscription options to receive notifications direct to your inbox

Written Question
Hamas: UNRWA
Wednesday 17th April 2024

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what information his Department holds on the use of UNRWA push-to-talk networks by Hamas.

Answered by Andrew Mitchell - Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)

The UK takes allegations of neutrality violations extremely seriously, including any incidents related to UN installations. The FCDO also monitors this closely through our annual assessment of UNRWA. When violations have been identified, UNRWA has taken action, including raising the issue with relevant parties.

We are aware that Catherine Colonna has now provided her interim report on UNRWA neutrality to the UN Secretary-General. This independent investigation includes an assessment of the policies and systems UNRWA has in place to ensure neutrality.


Written Question
Gaza: Israel
Wednesday 27th March 2024

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what assessment he has made of the potential implications for his policies of the analysis of casualty figures in Gaza by the Professor of Statistics and Data Science at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, published on 7 March 2024.

Answered by Andrew Mitchell - Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)

Like many of our partners, we routinely use reports from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) to monitor daily figures for casualties in Gaza. OCHA rely on reporting from the Hamas-run Ministry of Health in Gaza. Casualty figures are only one data point of many we use to understand the scale of the conflict and its impact on civilians. Satellite imagery of building damage, eye-witness accounts from hospitals and data on living conditions all feed into our assessment.


Written Question
Israel: Hamas
Wednesday 27th March 2024

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of recent Hamas rocket fire into Israel.

Answered by Andrew Mitchell - Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)

As the Government has stated previously, for there to be a lasting peace Israel's security must be assured. Removing Hamas' capacity to launch attacks against Israel and Hamas no longer being in charge of Gaza are among the vital elements for a lasting peace.

We are calling for an immediate pause to get aid in and hostages out, then progress towards a sustainable, permanent ceasefire, without a return to destruction, fighting and loss of life. This is the focus of all our diplomatic efforts.


Written Question
BBC Arabic Service
Tuesday 26th March 2024

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport:

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions she has held with the BBC on the appearance of Major General Wasef Eriqat on BBC Arabic.

Answered by Julia Lopez - Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s Ministerial team regularly meets with BBC leadership, including members of the Board, to discuss a range of issues.

The BBC has a duty to provide accurate and impartial news and information. In delivering that duty, the BBC is editorially and operationally independent and decisions around its editorial policies and guidelines are a matter for the BBC. Ofcom is the external independent regulator responsible for ensuring BBC coverage is duly impartial and accurate under the Broadcasting Code and BBC Charter.

The Secretary of State has repeatedly made clear that the BBC’s accuracy and impartiality is critical to viewer trust. It is particularly important when it comes to coverage of highly sensitive events, such as the terrorist acts committed in Israel on 7 October and the ongoing conflict in Gaza. The Secretary of State has regularly stated that point in meetings with the BBC.


Written Question
South Africa: Antisemitism and Crime
Thursday 1st February 2024

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of his Department's travel advice for South Africa, in the context of (a) recent trends in levels of crime in South Africa and (b) the case of cricketer David Teeger.

Answered by Andrew Mitchell - Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)

We are aware of the high levels of crime in South Africa and have reflected this in our Travel Advice. FCDO's Travel Advice is constantly under review and regularly updated to ensure the safety of British Nationals travelling to and living in South Africa.

We are also aware of the case involving David Teeger and the concerns that have been raised about this case.


Written Question
Embassies: Iran
Wednesday 18th June 2014

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport:

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 11 June 2014, Official Report, column 142W, on embassies: Iran, what the estimated monetary value is of each of the works of art cited in that answer which is owned by the Government Art Collection.

Answered by Lord Vaizey of Didcot

The most recent estimated values for the works (December 2011) were as follows:

0/664 George Hayter - Queen Victoria (1819-1901) Reigned 1837-1901- oil painting - £20,000

5230 Ahmad - Fath 'Ali Shah (1797-1834) 2nd Qajar Shah of Iran – oil painting - £1,200,000

0/663 Sir Samuel Luke Fildes (after) - King Edward VII (1841-1910) Reigned 1901-10 – oil painting - £2,000

17351 Adrian Berg - Gloucester Gate, Regent's Park, June – oil painting - £10,000

13319 Cedric Morris - Tulips and Iris – oil painting - £20,000

0/661 Sir Samuel Luke Fildes (after) - King George V (1865-1936) Reigned 1910-36 – oil painting - £2,000


Written Question
Embassies: Iran
Wednesday 11th June 2014

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport:

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if he will provide a detailed itemised inventory of what works of art from Government collections were on loan to the British Embassy and Residence in Tehran at the time of the riots in November 2011; and what claims for compensation for loss, damage or destruction have been made by the Government to insurers in respect of those items.

Answered by Lord Vaizey of Didcot

The following Government Art Collection (GAC) works of art were on display in Tehran when the British Embassy was attacked in November 2011:

0/664 George Hayter - Queen Victoria (1819-1901) Reigned 1837-1901- oil painting

5230 Ahmad - Fath 'Ali Shah (1797-1834) 2nd Qajar Shah of Iran - oil painting

0/663 Sir Samuel Luke Fildes (after) - King Edward VII (1841-1910) Reigned 1901-10 - oil painting

17351 Adrian Berg - Gloucester Gate, Regent's Park, June – oil painting

13319 Cedric Morris - Tulips and Iris - oil painting

0/661 Sir Samuel Luke Fildes (after) - King George V (1865-1936) Reigned 1910-36 - oil painting

The GAC does not – and is not permitted under Government accounting regulations – to insure its own works on a commercial basis. They are Crown Property and displayed at the Government's own risk within HMG buildings.


Written Question
Smoking
Tuesday 13th May 2014

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 6 May 2014, Official Report, column 72W, on Iran, if he will provide a detailed itemisation of works of art, antiquities, fixtures and fittings and other items of public property damaged or destroyed by rioters in HM Embassy in Tehran in 2011.

Answered by Hugh Robertson

The FCO is currently unable to provide a detailed breakdown of all items damaged or destroyed by rioters at the British Embassy in Tehran in November 2011. Since visits to Tehran by UK officials recommenced on 3 December 2013 – after a gap of two years – it has only be possible to conduct preliminary assessments of the condition of the Embassy. A comprehensive assessment of the damage will require a detailed survey by a specialist. Planning is currently underway to conduct this survey as soon as is practical.


Written Question
High Speed 2 Railway Line
Tuesday 6th May 2014

Asked by: Michael Ellis (Conservative - Northampton North)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will place in the Library an inventory of the property of the Government destroyed by rioters in HM Embassy in Tehran in 2011.

Answered by Hugh Robertson

The British Embassy in Tehran was overrun by a mob on 29 November 2011, resulting in the withdrawal of all Embassy staff. I am placing a list of the property damaged in the Library of the House.