Rory Stewart: I have not held full discussions with the Secretary of State for Defence on this subject. However, we feel deep respect for anybody who has served in the armed forces, and the Government have been pleased to put £770 million from the LIBOR fund into supporting veterans at home and abroad.
Rory Stewart: I will absolutely commit to meeting the Secretary of State for Defence on this subject. We have met my right hon. Friend the Member for Mid Sussex (Sir Nicholas Soames) and Lord Goodlad to discuss the matter. The prime responsibility for looking after veterans of the Zimbabwean army lies with the Government of Zimbabwe, so we will also raise the issue directly with President Mnangagwa.
Rory Stewart: Human rights issues are raised directly by all Ministers in all interactions with counterparts. I myself have raised them nine times in the past four months. We also support civil society organisations on the ground and support human rights norms through multilateral and international organisations.
Rory Stewart: These are very alarming developments, and the transition from what was believed to be an Islamist Government to a nationalist Government appears to have coincided with a crackdown on such issues. The Foreign Secretary has raised the matter directly with President Sisi and we will continue to champion these issues and raise them in every interaction with the Egyptian Government.
Rory Stewart: We are very focused on and aware of this issue. A lot of our focus at the moment is on the detention centres, and on ensuring that we work with the UN, with the EU and through DFID programmes on improving conditions in those detention centres.
Rory Stewart: Ministers are very aware of both the issues of child detainees in Israel and of Opposition politicians in Bangladesh. They are raised continually in our interactions with those Governments. We try to do it sensitively, both at a ministerial level and at a diplomatic level, and we believe we can make progress on both issues.
Rory Stewart: Absolutely; religious freedom is critical, and particularly critical in a world in which religious and sectarian violence appears to be increasingly dominant. We must advocate religious freedom, and we do so also through Department for International Development support to civil society organisations.
Rory Stewart: That is a very important question. Our belief is that we need to do these things simultaneously. We need to use our political relationships actively, in order to drive human rights improvement and change, but at the same time we have an obligation to very vulnerable, marginalised people in those countries, and we need to continue to provide development assistance to them.
Rory Stewart: The Foreign Secretary certainly raised the question of human rights and freedom of religion with his Iranian counterparts on his visit.
Rory Stewart: As the shadow Foreign Secretary is aware, we continue to press very strongly in all our meetings with the Saudis on these issues. We have made some progress on the port of Hodeidah, although it is too early to be complacent; it remains a very difficult situation, and we need to continue pushing. And happy new year to the right hon. Lady too.
Rory Stewart: At the moment, we do not believe that the key to reopening the port of Hodeidah will be a third party. We have made a lot of progress. In particular, I pay tribute to the Secretary of State for International Development, who, in a recent visit to Djibouti, while working on the issue of Yemen, got undertakings on the port of Hodeidah. We will be watching this very closely over the next 30...