Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2015-16 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

Show
by:
Find by:
Close

UIN

Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
Showing 1-20 out of 74
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100
Expand all answers
Print selected
Q
Asked by Lord Hylton
Asked on: 15 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Human Rights
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their response to the speech by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on 8 March at Geneva on the activities of his Office and recent human rights developments, calling on the government of Bahrain to undertake concrete confidence building measures and allow his Office mandate holders to conduct visits.
Answered on: 29 March 2017

The British Government notes the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights' speech of 8 March and his comments on Bahrain. The UK National Statement made mention of Bahrain under Item Two at the Human Rights Council on 9 March. We urge the Government of Bahrain to guarantee human rights and freedoms for all its citizens. The UK is committed to working with Bahrain to implement its reform agenda and strengthen human rights.

We encourage further cooperation between Bahrain and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Q
Asked by Lord Hylton
Asked on: 27 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Prisoners
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will make representations to the government of Bahrain for the release from prison of (1) Abduljalil al-Singace, (2) Hussain Hubail, and (3) Hasan Mushaima, in the light of their medical conditions.
Q
Asked on: 07 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Capital Punishment
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to the government of Bahrain concerning the planned executions of Hussein Ali Mousa and Mohammed Ramadan.
Answered on: 21 March 2017

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office and our Embassy in Bahrain continue to closely monitor Mohammed Ramadan and Hussein Ali Mousa's cases. The UK is firmly opposed to the death penalty, and it is our longstanding policy to oppose capital sentences in all circumstances. We continue to raise concerns about these cases both in public and in private at the most senior levels. The Ombudsman and the Special Investigations Unit are continuing with investigations into complaints of torture in these cases. We encourage a swift, transparent conclusion to the investigations.

Q
Asked on: 07 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Human Rights
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they intend to sign the Swiss resolution condemning human rights abuses in Bahrain at the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
Answered on: 21 March 2017

We understand the Swiss are no longer proposing a statement on Bahrain at the UN Human Rights Council. The UK referenced Bahrain in our National Statement under Item 2 delivered on 9 March.

The UK will continue to engage the Government of Bahrain on its reform agenda, and where we have concerns about human rights we will continue to raise them at an appropriate level, both in private and in public.

Q
Asked by Lord Scriven
Asked on: 09 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Human Rights
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government why the UK will not sign a Swiss-led statement at the UN Human Rights Council, criticising human rights violations in Bahrain.
Answered on: 21 March 2017

We understand the Swiss are no longer proposing a statement on Bahrain at the UN Human Rights Council. The UK referenced Bahrain in our National Statement under Item 2 delivered on 9 March.

The UK will continue to engage the Government of Bahrain on its reform agenda, and where we have concerns about human rights we will continue to raise them at an appropriate level, both in private and in public.

Q
(Islington South and Finsbury)
Asked on: 13 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Conflict, Stability and Security Fund and Prosperity Fund
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, in which countries his Department spent funds allocated from the (a) Conflict, Stability and Security Fund and (b) Prosperity Fund in 2016-17.
A
Answered by: Boris Johnson
Answered on: 21 March 2017

a) Below is a list of countries in which the FCO spent funds allocated from the core discretionary allocation Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) in FY16/17 in line with NSC direction and oversight. Some exclusions have been made on the grounds of operational security;

Afghanistan, Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Burma, Burundi, Chad, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Georgia , Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, Macedonia, Mali, Morocco, Moldova, Nepal, Nigeria, Occupied Palestinian Territories, Overseas Territories, Pakistan , Peru, Serbia, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Uzbekistan, Ukraine and Yemen.

The CSSF also funded, as part of its spending review settlement, migration work in France , China, Eritrea, Ghana, Greece, India, South Africa, Turkey, Vietnam, Zimbabwe and Counter Terrorism Programme work in Indonesia, Maldives, Philippines, and Turkey.

b) In 2016/17, the FCO spent Prosperity Fund money in Argentina, Brazil, Burma, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Vietnam, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, South Africa , South Korea, Tanzania, , Turkey, USA. The FCO also spent Prosperity Fund money allocated to the Commonwealth Marine Economies programme in Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, Dominica, Fiji, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Kiribati, Maldives, Mauritius, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Seychelles, Solomon islands, St Lucia, St Vincent & The Grenadines, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.

Q
Asked by Lord Hylton
Asked on: 16 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Politics and Government
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to help prevent renewed political violence in Bahrain, in the light of recent reports of executions, arrests and deprivations of citizenship in that country.
Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 07 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Human Rights
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the effect of the proposed constitutional change in Bahrain to allow military courts to try civilians on human rights in that country.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 14 March 2017

We will be following the legislative process on the proposed constitutional amendment closely. The UK recognises the genuine threat from terrorism which Bahrain faces. We continue to work closely with the Government of Bahrain to encourage progress on human rights, which includes building effective and accountable institutions, strengthening the rule of law, and police and judicial reform. We continue to encourage Bahrain to live up to its international and domestic human rights obligations.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 07 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Sayed Alwadaei
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations the Government has made to the Bahrainian Government on the detention of members of Sayed Alwadaei's family in that country.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 14 March 2017

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office and our Embassy in Bahrain are monitoring this issue closely. The Ministry of Interior Ombudsman has responsibility for investigating allegations of mistreatment in detention. We encourage all those with concerns about their treatment in detention to report these directly to the Ombudsman, and we urge the Ombudsman to carry out thorough investigations into any such allegations. We also continue to encourage the Government of Bahrain to deliver on its international and domestic human rights commitments. We continue to raise concerns about human rights with the Bahraini authorities both in private and in public.

Q
(Islington South and Finsbury)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 06 March 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: UN Human Rights Council
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the Government's policy is on the proposed Swiss statement at the UN Human Rights Council on Bahrain; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Boris Johnson
Answered on: 09 March 2017

We understand the Swiss are no longer proposing a statement on Bahrain at the UN Human Rights Council. The UK plans to reference Bahrain in our National Statement under Item Two.

The UK will continue to engage the Government of Bahrain on its reform agenda, and where we have concerns about human rights we will continue to raise them at an appropriate level, both in private and in public.

Q
(Ochil and South Perthshire)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 27 February 2017
Department for International Trade
Trade Agreements
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, with which countries he has established trade working groups in the last 12 months.
A
Answered by: Greg Hands
Answered on: 02 March 2017

Ministers and officials in the Department for International Trade are working closely with counterparts across a wide range of markets, in order to promote the UK as a great place to do business and with which to trade. We have announced nine working groups in the last 12 months: with Australia, China, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), Israel, India, New Zealand, Norway, Turkey and South Korea. The GCC comprises 6 countries: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. As the PM announced during her visit to Washington, we will also take forward high-level talks with the USA.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 17 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Military Aid
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what training assistance his Department has given to the Bahrain Police on collecting relevant intelligence prior to demonstrations.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 27 February 2017

The Government has not provided the Bahrain Police with training on collecting relevant intelligence prior to demonstrations.

The UK continues to support Bahraini-led reform through a package of technical assistance. We believe it is not good enough to criticise countries from the sidelines. Only by working with Bahrain can we bring about the changes we would like to see in the country. Any assistance delivered by or on behalf of the Government complies with our domestic and international human rights obligations.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 17 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Nabeel Rajab
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will call on the Government of Bahrain to immediately and unconditionally release prisoner-of-conscience Nabeel Rajab and drop all charges against him.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 27 February 2017

​The British Government has raised concerns over the case of Nabeel Rajab with the Bahraini Government at senior levels. The judicial process is ongoing and we continue to monitor the case closely with officials attending every hearing.

Q
Asked by Lord Hylton
Asked on: 27 January 2017
Ministry of Justice
Detainees: Bahrain
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the light of the training and assistance provided by HM Inspectorate of Prisons’ staff and police to assist or develop local inspection and monitoring of places of custody in Bahrain in 2014–15, whether they have since provided further training and assistance, in particular to the Criminal Investigation Directorate headquarters in Manama; and what assessment they have made of reports of torture at those headquarters and elsewhere in Bahrain.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 24 February 2017

HMI Prisons delivered refresher training on how to inspect police facilities to the Prisoners and Detainees Rights Commission (PDRC) before the latter conducted its police custody inspections. HMI Prisons had no involvement in the inspections themselves. HMI Prisons continues to encourage the PDRC to focus on three key priorities: examining the response to allegations of torture, including the detainee voice in all reports, and producing well structured reports with clear judgements. HMI Prisons has not provided further training on police custody inspection to the PDRC. HMI Prisons has delivered no training to and has had no direct engagement with the Criminal Investigation Directorate.

The UK government continues to urge all allegations of torture or mistreatment in detention to be reported to the Ministry of Interior Ombudsman, whose duty it is to carry out full, independent investigations into these allegations. We will continue to raise concerns about human rights with the Government of Bahrain whenever we have them.

The UK continues to support Bahraini-led reform through a package of technical assistance. We believe it is not good enough to criticise countries from the sidelines. Only by working with Bahrain can we bring about the changes we would like to see in the country. Any assistance delivered by or on behalf of the UK Government complies with our domestic and international human rights obligations.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 08 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Journalism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations the Government has made to the Bahrainian Government on licence renewals for journalists.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 24 February 2017

The UK Government has continued to emphasise to the Bahraini Government the need to respect the rights of all citizens and to act proportionately to protect human rights, including freedom of expression.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 08 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Al Wefaq
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations the Government has made to the Bahrainian Government on the (a) dissolution of the Al-Wefaq political party and (b) imprisonment of Sheikh Ali Salman.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 24 February 2017

The Foreign Secretary, my Rt Hon. Friend the Member for Uxbridge and South Ruislip (Mr Johnson), issued a statement expressing concerns on the day of the Bahraini High Administrative Court’s decision to dissolve the main Bahraini Shia opposition political society Al Wefaq.

We have raised our concerns about the case of Sheikh Ali Salman at Ministerial level, including during the visit of the former Foreign Secretary, my Rt Hon. Friend the member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), to Bahrain in May 2016. Embassy officials have attended every hearing and we continue to monitor the case closely.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 08 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Counter-terrorism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of reports that Bahrain's anti-terrorism legislation has been used to target civil society organisations and human rights activists in that country.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 24 February 2017

The Government has regular discussions, including at Ministerial level, on the issue of the operation of civil societies in Bahrain. We continue to encourage Bahrain to develop an enabling atmosphere for participation in society of all its citizens. We are assisting the Ministry of Labour and Social Development and the civil society sector more broadly to help to create a more enabling environment for Non-Government Organisations and civil society.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 08 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Travel Restrictions
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations the Government has made to the Bahrainian Government on the imposition of travel bans on human rights defenders, trade unionists, lawyers and political activists.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 24 February 2017

​We have raised the allegations of travel bans at senior levels within the Government of Bahrain, particularly with regard to reports of Human Rights Defenders being prevented from travelling to the Human Rights Council in Geneva last year. We will continue to raise concerns where we have them.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 08 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Third Sector
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations the Government has made to the Bahrainian Government on the operation of civil societies.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 24 February 2017

The Government has regular discussions, including at Ministerial level, on the issue of the operation of civil societies in Bahrain. We continue to encourage Bahrain to develop an enabling atmosphere for participation in society by all of its citizens. We are assisting the Ministry of Labour and Social Development and the civil society sector more broadly to help to create a more enabling environment for Non-Government Organisations and civil society.

Q
Asked by Lord Scriven
Asked on: 06 February 2017
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Conflict, Stability and Security Fund
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government why the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund was used to support a visit by the Chief of Police of Bahrain to Belfast to learn about how the Police Service of Northern Ireland manages public order issues.
Answered on: 20 February 2017

The Bahraini Chief of Police, Major General Tariq Al Hassan, visited Northern Ireland in June 2014 to observe and discuss the range of reforms to policing undertaken in Northern Ireland. The visit was funded from the Conflict Pool.

A small delegation of Bahrain police officers subsequently visited Northern Ireland for a week in August 2015 to observe globally recognised best practice in human rights compliant public order policing. This visit was funded from the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund

The UK continues to support Bahraini-led reform through a package of technical assistance. We believe it is not good enough to criticise countries from the sidelines. Only by working with Bahrain can we bring about the changes we would like to see in the country. Any assistance delivered by or on behalf of the UK Government complies with our domestic and international human rights obligations.

Expand all answers
Print selected
Showing 1-20 out of 74
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100