05/09/2017 Tuesday in Parliament

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Highlights of proceedings in Parliament on Tuesday 5 September, presented by Alicia McCarthy.

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Hello there and welcome to Tuesday in Parliament as MPs return


to Westminster for the first time since the start


Parliament may have been in recess, but the Brexit


David Davis updates MPs on the ups and downs of the negotiations.


Nobody will pretend this would be simple or easy. I have always said


that the glaciation will be tough. MPs and peers express their concerns


over North Korea's nuclear tests and a Foreign Office minister faces


criticism from his own side over the Government's response to plight


of the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar. Which sounded deep close to doubling


for the blame of this ethnic cleansing on the victim community.


Just where has the UK got to in its negotiations


At a news conference following the last round of talks


both the UK and EU expressed frustration at the pace of the talks


and continued disagreement over the size of the UK's "divorce bill".


EU negotiator Michel Barnier said "no decisive progress" had


But the Brexit Secretary David Davis said the UK had a "duty


to our taxpayers" to "rigorously" examine the EU's demands.


Updating MPs David Davis was jeered by the Labour side as he gave


While at times do negotiations have been tough it is clear we have made


concrete progress on many important issues.


LAUGHTER in areas such as healthcare


and recognition of qualifications. But he turned to the so-called


divorce bill - the money the UK Our discussions this week have


demonstrated yet again and exposed yet again that the UK approach is


substantially more flexible and pragmatic than that of the EU, it


did avoid unnecessary destruction for business and consumers. I have


urged the EU to be more imaginative and flexible on the approach to this


point. He turned to the money the UK will pay on leaving. In July the


commission said of the EU position. We have a duty to our taxpayers to


interrogate the position vigorously and that is what we did line by


line. It may be a little bit of a shock to the commissioner but that


is what we did line by line. In the August round we set out our analysis


of the EU position and we also had in death discussions and even


doesn't bank and other budget is. It is clear the two sides have very


different legal stances but as we said in the Article 50 D settlement


should be in accordance with law and in the spirit of the UK continuing


partnership with the EU. There were, he said,


significant differences to be Although he will say at I am sure he


is equally frustrated by an equally unhelpful to whistle comments and


blackmail comments from some of his own colleagues. I am sure that


colleagues and officials in his department are working hard in these


difficult because stations and pay tribute to what they are doing


behind the scenes. But the state of affairs and the slow process of


progress are a real cause for concern. Parties appear to be


getting farther apart than closer together. There is no huge pressure


on the negotiating round itself in September. -- now huge pressure. The


consequence is this, if says two is pushed back there are very serious


consequences for Britain. And no deal, which I had hoped had died a


death since the election, could yet rise from the ashes. Nobody would


pretend that this would be simple or easy. I have always said the


negotiation will be tough, complex... Tough, complex and at


times confrontational. Keir Starmer said it was time


to drop some of the Prime Minister's "deeply flawed" red lines to create


the flexibility necessary. We are all see reaching the stage of


negotiations where fantasy meets brutal reality. The truth is that


too many promises have been made about Brexit which can't be kept.


The Secretary of State has just said that nobody was pretending it would


be easy. LAUGHTER


Mr Speaker, they were pretending it would be easy, the international


trade Secretary promised that negotiating a deal with the EU would


be and I quote, one of the easiest deals in human history to negotiate.


Can I urge my right honourable friend not to accept the advice of


the opposition party that only six weeks ago was in favour of leaving


the customs union and the single market and only today has now


reversed that position, he should say steady on the course of the


Government. The EU has a very simple choice to make and they help it make


its own but they will boldly mated later, they can either trade with


this but no new tariff barriers because women are very generous


offer with a Conte Boulez on WTO rules which we know works fine for


us because that is what's we do with the rest of the world. The children


references to the EU blackmailing the UK don't help our negotiating


stand in fact they increased the risk of UK crashing out of the


European Union. In those circumstances does the Secretary of


State still agree with themselves on the need for a decision referendum


which would allow people to vote on the terms of the deal or devote to


stay in the European Union? A Labour MP returned


to the exit bill. On the matter of the financial


settlement does the Secretary of State believed that the European


Union is blackmailing the UK? With the best will in the world I choose


my own words and of course in the negotiation there are pressure


points, but that is to be expected. David Davis.


The Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, has brushed aside


criticism of President Trump's response to the North Korea crisis.


Last week North Korea fired a missile over Japan -


and on Sunday it said it had successfully tested a nuclear weapon


that could be loaded on to a long-range missile.


The secretive communist state said its sixth nuclear test


Pyongyang said it had tested a hydrogen bomb -


a device many times more powerful than an atomic bomb.


Updating the Commons on the situation, Boris Johnson set


out the gravity of the situation and called for calm diplomacy.


The House must be under no illusion that this latest test marks another


perilous advance in North Korea's nuclear ambitions. In a country


blighted by decades of communist economic failure where in the 1990s


hundreds of thousands of people died of starvation or reduced to eating


grass and leaves to survive, the regime has squandered its resources


on building an illegal armoury of nuclear bombs. He has will wish to


join me in condemning the nuclear test that poses a grave threat to


the security of every country in East Asia and the wider world. Will


Britain be a voice of calm reason on the world stage by will we allow


ourselves with Angela Merkel, she told the Gerry Mullan today that


they can only be a peaceful and problematic solution and if the


answer is yes and that is the route the Government takes they will have


our full support. But if they pretend that military options,


involving decapitation, annihilation, fire and fury, long


anywhere but in the bin, if they swear blind loyalty to Donald Trump,


no matter what appears he drags us towards, then they will be risking a


hell of a lot more than just losing our support. The UK Government must


use its much vaunted special relationship with the United States


and influence as friend Donald Trump to drastically calm his rhetoric. If


that relationship is organising, if the UK has any sort of influence, in


the White House, they must use it now to walk President Trump back


from the unacceptable threat he has made and to bring some modicum of


rationality to his dialogue. It is clear that he whole house hopes


overwhelmingly for a diplomatic solution to this crisis but the


Foreign Secretary also stared that we stand by our allies. So on that


point may I ask how they received any request for potential military


support in South Korea, Japan or indeed the United States? And if so


what has been our response? We have received no such request so far,


Madam Deputy Speaker, and our intention is to try and avoid the


circumstances in which such a request should be made. I want quiet


diplomacy but can I get the message across to the Foreign Secretary that


that means working with all our alleys? Yes, serious conversations


with the United States, but is unavoidable, but also to all our


friends and allies in Europe, but agree the Germans, French and others


and particularly Nato, that we have heard very little about Nato over


the recent days. When China is a voice of calm and even Russia is


more measured than the US, it speaks volumes about the state of global


diplomacy. I disagree with the Government cosying up to Donald


Trump, but if there is to be any value in those actions surely the


Foreign Secretary should use and violence to make President Donald


Trump use his phone for talking instead of sending involuntary


tweets into what is a fragile and precarious situation. I really must


disagree powerfully with the honourable lady's assertion that


somehow this crisis has been whipped up by the Americans for by the


president by the White House when if you look at the history, not just in


the last year but over the last ten years, 30 years, De Sart in a


movement towards the acquisition of thermonuclear weapons by a rogue


state and we have now come to a point where we have to use all the


diplomatic and peaceful at our disposable to freeze that nuclear


programme and ensure a peaceful solution.


Peers were also quick to offer strong condemnation


of North Korea's nuclear tests and their possible consequences.


Isn't the realistic lesson of the Cold War that beyond usually assured


destruction was a formidable campaigning to systematically


encourage change from within? Isn't the greatest current danger the law


of unintended consequences where a rogue missile or ugly bellicosity


could have devastating and lethal consequences for millions of


innocent people? I think it is clear that the global community affected


by the United Nations and the United Nations Security Council believes


the correct approach to this is a mixture of diplomatic and economic


measures. Going back to play detected was some scepticism about


the sanctions, I made courtroom at the UK permanent representative to


the United Nations Matty Rycroft said yesterday and he said it is


clear the sanctions are having an effect and he said those who doubt


this impact would only read the statements coming from the North


Korean regime, so these measures today are having an effect, the UK


Government is currently in discussion with our global partners


as to what further steps we might take. Sanctions that are but to


affect only the ordinary people of North Korea have not chosen to eat


grass, and the words of Vladimir Putin, actually a factor. What


efforts has Her Majesty 's government undertaking to try and


ensure that future sanctions actually target the leader and not


the people of North Korea? The noble lady is right to allude to a very


natural concern, the plight of the people of North Korea. There is


every reason to imagine that their plight is very grave indeed. I


shared the noble lady's concern. The UK is doing whatever it can through


diplomatic channels to exercise influence.


The United Nations says the number of Rohingya refugees


crossing from Myanmar - also known as Burma -


into Bangladesh has surged in recent days.


The Rohingya are a stateless, mostly Muslim, ethnic


minority who have faced persecution in Myanmar.


More than 123,000 are now said to have fled violence


in the country's Rakhine state since 25th August.


The conflict was triggered by an attack by Rohingya


This sparked a military counter-offensive that has forced


a flood of civilians from their villages.


Answering an urgent question the Foreign Office Minister said


he'd issued a statement jointly with the International Development


Minister Alistair Burt after the initial outbreak of violence.


Condemning the attacks by Rohingya militants


At the same time, the UK also strongly urge the security forces


to show restraint and call for all parties to


The MP who'd asked the urgent question was unimpressed.


I have to say, I'm a little bit disappointed by the response of the


Minister in the way he started by suggesting as if somehow the


Rohingya Muslims and these people had caused this to occur. He must be


aware that in the last number of years, there has been a semester


Matic rape and murder on burning and beheading of people of the Rohingya


community. This is one of the worst outbreaks of violence in decades.


The international community is sidelined as they watch another one


the envelope before our eyes is. Does the Minister agree that this


situation requires urgent integration, and can he tell us what


concrete action the Government and Prime Minister had taken today to


deal with this? Very sorry to hear the honourable ladies are


disappointed. We have miners of for some time and made it known through


diplomatic sources are feelings. If yours and Congress that unsung Suu


Kyi, so long such a beacon for human rights, has not stepped in in terms


of the military crackdown meetings are many people that access to food.


So what do we say about the struggles going on between the


Government and Bernie is military. And what we say to those who wish to


uphold human rights to gain the upper hand? I thank Billy honourable


lady for her worries and four at the British beaucoup Brahams have very


little knowledge of Burma, perhaps anything they know is Ang Sang Suu


Kyi and perhaps they will be dismayed. There is various sectarian


aspects within Burma and a lack of democracy as we would know it's


going back five decades. And disappointed with the tone of the


Minister, which sounded like dumping the blame for this ethnic cleansing


on the Muslim community. Can he is a little more about our expectations


of our sons the key is leading a Government and associated with


behaviour that is unacceptable by any standard of behaviour at all?


I'm sorry that my honourable friend Jesus to use the opportunity to


grandstand on the way that he does. I thought it made it absolutely


clear... JEERING The House has voted on that


matter, as the all know. We have made it clear that we do feel that


Ang Sang sickie and her Government do need to rise to the plane. We are


not in any way be getting our understanding of the violence that


is going on and it's impact. Over in the Lords a bishop asked


what the UK Government was doing The United Nations is reporting


35,000 people have crossed from Myanmar into Bangladesh in the past


24 hours alone. The two UN camps for refugees are now full. What action


does Her Majesty Government plan to take in response to this imaginary


crisis, and in particular, what representations are being made to


them Janmaat Government entrance bonds to the blocking of humanity


Government to the locking of humanitarian aid?


The minister Lady Goldie said the UK Government was very concerned


and the situation had been raised by the UK's ambassador


But peers wanted her to say more about what was actually being done.


Has the Government officially condemned the action that has been


described as genocide, ethnic cleansing and the appalling scenes


that we are witnessing, both on social media and on our TV screens


of families, children, being driven out in the most horrible of


circumstances and thousands of villagers being burned down? I've


herders saying that we're sensitive about the transition of military to


democracy, but there's surely no excuse for this in that transition?


I think the United Kingdom is clearly on the record as making


obvious to those involved our very profound unease of what is going on.


We do intend this violence and are trying, with other partners, look


forwards to both assist Burma and the plight of those directly


affected. You're watching Tuesday in


Parliament with me, Alicia McCarthy. Don't forget you can find plenty


more from Westminster on our website 12 weeks after the Grenfell Tower


tragedy, the Communities Secretary Sajid Javid told MPs that 196


households needed a new home. Of those, 29 have moved


into temporary accommodation while two have moved


into permanent homes. Mr Javid also revealed that 165


tower blocks across the UK - clad with some form of aluminium


composite material - Several MPs voiced concerns


about the slow pace of the rehousing scheme while others urged Ministers


to pay more attention to the psychological


problems facing survivors. The number of people who have moved


into temporary or permanent homes continues to rise,


but I know that the overall One reason for the low take-up


of temporary home offers is that some residents simply don't


want to move twice, and they have said


that it is their preference to stay where they are until a permenant


home becomes available. He said he didn't


want to rush anyone. Meanwhile, residents who don't


want to live in emergency accommodation for any


longer than is necessary. Nor do I want families forced


to move or make snap decisions simply so I


have better numbers to report The Grenfell disaster prompted


a testing regime on cladding Mr Javid said four of the seven


cladding systems had The cladding systems that passed


the test are in use on eight The owners of affected


buildings have been given detailed advice, drawn up by


independent expert advisory panel. This covers steps to ensure


the safety of residents, including, where necessary, the


removal of cladding. For me, the biggest sign that the


people at Kensington will not be beaten is the amazing results


achieved by local children in their GCSEs and A-levels will stop Imad


Wasim critically of remarkable young women, just 16 years old, her family


lost their home in the fire, but she still received a string of top


grades. Mr Speaker, on Help And Rehousing,


we've been reminded today how vital this is by the reports of 20


Grenfell Fire survivors who have tried to commit


suicide since the fire. 12 weeks on, how on Earth


can it be that only 29 households, 196 from


Grenfell Tower and Grenfell Walk, What is the Secretary of State doing


to speed this up, and when was all the survivors be offered


permanent rehousing? The school year began today,


and students are shortly beginning university from inadequate


accommodation in hotels As will those of the young man


who was also taking his GCSEs the morning of the fire, and arrived


in his underwear at school, was given clothes to where,


who didn't have the fabulous good fortune of the young


woman you spoke about, has had no consideration,


and has lost his place at school. The Justice Minister Dominic Raab


has apologised for a policy requiring workers to fund the cost


of taking legal action The Government introduced fees


for employment tribunals in 2013 in order to reduce the number


of cases considered The trade union, Unison,


challenged the fees, arguing that they were


denying people justice. And, in July, the Supreme Court


ruled that the policy was unlawful. My constituents have highlighted


the stress and financial burden placed on them


in going through an employment tribunal case which


they ultimately won. Can the minister ensure that those


who are entitled to claim back under the tribunal freeze are made


aware of the process and are reunited with their money


in a timely fashion? I thank the honourable


member for that question. He's absolutely right that it can be


quite an ordeal to go to the employment tribunal or any


tribunal, which is why pay tribute to the work


of Acas and Conciliation. We're going to set out


the practical arrangements for the reimbursement of those fees,


and we want to make sure all the points, particular making


people aware, are properly thought through before


we do that. Was the decision to introduce the


fees in the first place a mistake? We certainly accept


the Supreme Court ruling. We've ended those fees and we're


looking to make sure that, not only do we reimburse those that


were affected, but we obviously Richard Burgon wrote


to Justice Secretary, David Lidington, in July asking


for a "full and unequivocal Last week, I received this


wholly inadequate reply, but will the Minister apologise


today for the suffering that this policy has caused to hundreds


of thousands of working people? Look, we've admitted and conceded


we got the balance wrong. I'm very sorry, I am happy to say,


for any frustration or deleterious impact it's had on anyone that's


been affected by this. That's why we have moved so quickly


both to end the charges but also to make sure there are practical


arrangements for the reimbursement Finally, the start of


a new Parliament gives MPs the chance to put


forward their own bills that they'd Well, two Conservatives took full


advantage of the system. Veteran backbencher,


Christopher Chope, put down nearly 50, covering


everything from funding the NHS to voter registration,


and the classification His fellow Conservative, Peter Bone,


introduced nearly 30 bills he'd Again, he had a wide agenda,


with ambitions for child safety, regulating drones and oversight


of the BBC. Whilst a handful of the bills


might make it to debate on a sitting Friday,


without Government backing, And that's it from me for now,


but do join me at the same time tomorrow when Theresa May faces


Jeremy Corbyn for the first Prime Minister's Questions


since the summer break. But for now from me,


Alicia McCarthy, goodbye.