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Colombia: Military Aid

Volume 474: debated on Thursday 3 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has received on UK military assistance to the High Mountain Battalions of the Colombian Army from the recent delegation of Colombian trades unionists hosted by his Department; and if he will make a statement. (197297)

The issue of UK assistance to specific parts of the Colombian army did not arise during my meeting with the delegation of Colombian trades unionists, whose visit was co-organised by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Trades Union Congress (TUC), nor did it in their subsequent meetings with FCO officials.

The delegation welcomed the efforts of the international community including the UK to help generate lasting peace in Colombia. However, they also outlined their concerns on the difficult environment for their members, concerns that we share. This is why we will continue to discuss with the Colombian TUC and their UK counterparts how this Government can offer their practical support to Colombian trade unionists.