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Volume 455: debated on Monday 15 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations she has made to the Government of Libya since 19 December 2006 on the sentencing to death of five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor in relation to children being infected by HIV. (114779)

The presidency of the EU issued a statement in reaction to the verdict of the Libyan court on 19 December, reflecting UK concerns about this issue. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has not made separate representations to the Government of Libya about this. However, Ministers and senior officials raise the issue regularly with the Libyans and have done so throughout the trial process. I last did so with the Libyan Europe Minister on 28 November.

We remain concerned about the case, which is a tragedy for both the medical staff and the infected children and their families. We are monitoring the situation closely and will continue our efforts to encourage a solution to this case leading to the release of the medical staff.