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Palestine

Volume 455: debated on Wednesday 10 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if she will take steps to uphold the right of British nationals to enter the Occupied Territories. (110227)

We made our concerns known to the Israeli government most recently on 26 October and 4 December. On 23 October the EU demarched Israel on the issue of entry of EU nationals to the Occupied Territories.

The EU also held a meeting with Major General Yossef Mishlev, the Head of Co-ordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) on 13 December. During this meeting, Major General Mishlev confirmed that new arrangements for the entry of EU nationals were to be put into place. These include an order not to stamp any more passports with a “last permit” stamp; a visa can be renewed even if there is a “last permit” stamp in the passport and reintroduction of the policy of issuing a three-month tourist visa.

COGAT has established a contact person at the Allenby crossing to help with all individual problems. A similar contact person will be stationed at Ben Gurion airport.

We will be monitoring the implementation of these new procedures closely.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether (a) she, (b) her Department and (c) any agency thereof has received reports of funds being provided to Mohammed Dahlan in Gaza by (i) agents and (ii) agencies working on behalf of the United States in the last six months. (112894)

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has received no reports of any such support in the period referred to.

On the third point of the hon. Member’s question, it is the longstanding policy of the Government not to comment on intelligence matters.