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Summary

  1. Business Committee investigates future of work
  2. Foreign Office questions in Commons at 11.30am
  3. Statement at 12.30pm on situation in Northern Ireland
  4. MPs consider amendments to Neighbourhood Planning Bill
  5. Debate on Yemen
  6. Peers assemble at 2.30pm for questions
  7. Will examine domestic violence bill and Criminal Finances Bill

Live Reporting

By Esther Webber, Julia Butler and Kate Whannel

All times stated are UK

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Medical research debate concludes

House of Lords

Parliament

The debate on medical research concludes and that is where we have to leave our coverage of the House of Lords.

Tomorrow peers start at 3pm for oral questions followed by debate of the Digital Economy Bill.

There is also likely to be a repeat of the Prime Minister's statement on the triggering of Article 50.

'Please don't point at me'

Medical Research Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

House of Lords
HoL

Government spokeswoman Baroness Buscombe tells peers that the government would welcome an agreement to continue collaboration with EU partners. 

She says she is coming to the end of her speech at which point Lord Hunt complains that she has not addressed the issue of drugs funding for the NHS.

Baroness Buscombe says that the debate is about maintaining medical research at which point Lord Hunt begins gesticulating from his seat.

"Please don't point at me" she replies.

She offers to write to him on the subject.

Cap will have 'a devastating impact' on patients

Medical Research debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath
HoL

Labour's Lord Hunt of Kings Heath says Nice was designed to speed up the introduction of innovative new treatments. 

Now, he says, the government is using Nice as a rationer of treatments.

He argues that the £20m cap will have "a devastating impact" on patients. 

At the heart of the problem, he says, is that the pharmaceutical sector will no longer invest in new drugs if the NHS does not take up the results of that investment.

Lib Dem peer expresses concern about drugs cap

Medical Research debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Walmsley
HoL

Lib Dem Baroness Walmsley expresses concern about the £20m cap being placed on new drugs .

She says patients could die whilst waiting for Nice (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) to decide if it can pay for the drugs needed.

She asks the government to conduct an early review of the impact of the cap.

Scientists need 'a freer rein'

Medical Research debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Conservative Lord Ryder of Wensum uses his speech to call for the closing of a loophole in EU legislation.

The loophole, he says, prevents pharmaceutical companies from trialing cancer drugs on children "despite evidence that it could help patients."

He expresses the hope that when the UK leaves the EU the government will give scientists "a freer rein".

Peers debate medical research

House of Lords

Parliament

Medical research
PA

Debate on the Criminal Finance bill is adjourned and peers begin a one hour debate on the UK and medical research.

Lib Dem Lord Sharkey opens the debate by telling peers that the UK is a leader in the field of medical research. 

He expresses concern that Brexit could undermine this position; specifically he says there is anecdotal evidence that recruiting EU researchers has become more difficult. 

He urges the government to ensure that the UK will continue to collaborate with the EU.

Amendment would create 'a perverse incentive'

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

House of Lords
HoL

Home Office Minister Baroness Williams of Trafford suggests that the amendment could create a "perverse incentive" to whistleblow.

She argues that genuine whistleblowers are not usually motivated by money.

Baroness Kramer agrees that whistleblowers are not motivated by money. She argues that compensation should be provided because whistleblowers' careers are often ruined when they speak out.

Baroness Kramer says she is "obviously" going to withdraw the amendment (amendments are not usually pushed to a vote at committee stage).

However, she warns that "we are nowhere near coming to the end of this issue." 

'A bit of an overreaction'

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Conservative peer Lord Faulks worries that the whistleblowing amendment is "a bit of an overreaction".

He expresses concern that setting up a new body, as the amendment proposes, would create "substantial bureaucracy".

Labour's Lord Kennedy also expresses concern about setting up a new office to support whistleblowers. However, he agrees that further protections for whistleblowers should be enshrined in law.

Libor whistleblowers have been treated 'atrociously'

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Kramer
HoL

Lib Dem Baroness Kramer now speaks to her amendment, which would provide compensation for whistleblowers.

She tells peers that she has spoken to two whisteblowers from the Libor scandal  and says they have been treated atrociously.

She argues that "meaningful non-discretionary incentives" are needed in order to establish a successful whistleblowing culture.

Minister: UK 'hostile environment for illicit financial activities

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Williams of Trafford
BBC

Home Office Minister Baroness Williams tells peers that in 2015-16 £255 million pounds of illegal money was recovered under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

The actions of the money laundering supervisors help to assure that the UK is a "hostile" environment for "illicit' financial activities, she says. 

She urges amendments be withdrawn. 

Conservative peer criticises anti-money laundering system

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Hodgson
BBC

Conservative peer Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts supports the amendments and says anti-money laundering regulations in this country lack "effectiveness and follow-through".

"Billions of illegal money" is passing through London every year, he adds. 

Commons adjourns

House of Commons

Parliament

The House of Commons adjourns for the day and returns tomorrow at 11.30am for international development questions before questions to the prime minister at midday. 

Labour peer: Money laundering 'key enabler' of organised crime

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Rosser
BBC

Labour's home affairs spokesman, Lord Rosser, says money laundering is a "key enabler" of serious and organised crime. 

He says the effectiveness of the anti-money laundering system in the UK is a "key and crucial issue" which this bill seeks to address, but adds that it does not. 

Minister pays tributes to Burngrange mining disaster victims

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Mordaunt
HoC

Work and Pensions Minister Penny Mordaunt joins tributes to those killed in the Burngrange mining disaster. 

She says health and safety regulations have "improved greatly" but there is more work to be done to ensure mine operators protect their workers at all times.   

Peers debate anti-money laundering supervision

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Lib Dem peer Baroness Hamwee rises to move an amendment to the Criminal Finances bill. 

The amendments is concerned with anti-money laundering supervision.

The amendment states that the secretary of State must by regulations amend the Money Laundering Regulations 2007 to require the supervisory authorities to annually publish their enforcement statistics. 

Supervisory bodies should be "fully independent" and focussed on "transparency and accountability", she says. 

Baroness Hamwee
BBC

MP marks Burngrange mining disaster

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Bardell
HoC

Tonight's adjournment debate is from the SNP's Hannah Bardell, on health and safety in the mining industry.   

She begins by reading out the 15 names of men killed in the Burngrage mining disaster in 1947, saying she "cannot imagine how the families felt". 

Minister: Yemen war 'not intractable'

Yemen conflict debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Ellwood
BBC

Foreign Office Minister Tobias Ellwood echoes earlier concerns about fighting intensifying in more populated areas and in the port of Hodeidah. 

But he insists the conflict is "not intractable and there is a path to peace", with the UK "committed" to finding a way forward. 

He demurs from earlier suggestions the UK should move towards neutrality, saying this would ally us with Al-Qaeda. 

Minister rejects foreign ownership amendment

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Home Office Minister Baroness Williams of Trafford is unwilling to support the amendment.

She argues that there is "nothing inherently suspicious" about having a financial interest in an overseas country.

Conservative Lord Faulks fears the government is "missing an opportunity" to address the issue and urges the minister to check that there is no operational gap in police powers.

Despite these objections he withdraws his amendment.

Labour: We can act in Yemen

Yemen conflict debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry deplores that Yemen is "engulfed" in hunger, telling MPs: "We can do something about it tomorrow." 

She asks for assurance that Emergency Relief Co-ordinator Stephen O'Brien is leaving by agreement and not because of Saudi objections. 

London property 'beyond the reach of the normal law-abiding citizens'

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Labour's Lord Kennedy of Southwark supports the aim of the amendment.

He says that foreign ownership has inflated property prices in the capital "beyond the reach of normal law-abiding citizens".

He suggests that there will not be much time for new legislation in the next parliamentary session and urges the minister to "take the opportunity this bill gives us" to tackle the problem.

Yemen conflict: How bad is the humanitarian crisis?

Yemen
EPA

The UN  says  more than 7,600 people - mostly civilians - have been killed and close to 42,000 others injured since the conflict between forces loyal to exiled President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi and those allied to the Houthi rebel movement escalated in March 2015.

Fighting on the ground and air strikes on rebel-held areas by a Saudi-led coalition backed by the US and UK have displaced more than three million people.

And seven million people do not know where their next meal might come from.

The World Food Programme's executive director, Ertharin Cousin,  warned  in March 2017 that aid workers faced a "race against time" to prevent a famine, adding: "We have about three months of food stored inside the country."

Read more.

Peer ponders London at night

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

London at night
BBC

The next amendment to be debated states that a UWO can be issued if a person has a financial interest in land or property which is registered in the name of an overseas company

Former justice minister Lord Faulks tells peers that a night time walk in London reveals large parts to be "wholly unilluminated".

"Why are the lights off? Are they getting an early night? I think not."

He argues that many of these properties are not occupied but being used by foreign owners as a safe haven for wealth that has not been acquired legally.

MP highlights food shortages in Yemen

Yemen conflict debate

House of Commons

Parliament

The SNP's Alison Thewliss highlights reports that Yemen currently only has three months' food supplies. 

"There are not enough independent people on the ground to [officially] declare famine - but people are starving," she says. 

She tells MPs the priority must be to prevent things getting worse in the port of Hodeidah in order to allow access. 

Williams: Reasonable suspicion is sufficient for new powers

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Williams of Trafford
HoL

Home Office Minister Baroness Williams of Trafford tells peers that UWO is an investigative power.

She argues that the test of reasonable suspicion, rather than beyond reasonable doubt, is consistent with existing law.

She asks Lord Hodgson to withdraw his amendment, which he duly does. 

Committee concludes

Defence committee

Select Committee

Parliament

Witnesses
BBC

Chair Julian Lewis thanks the witnesses for their contributions and concludes the hearing.

We'll be back for more committee action tomorrow morning.

About the Defence Committee inquiry

Defence committee

Select Committee

Parliament

Donald Trump and Theresa May
PA

The committee is seeking to determine what US, UK and Nato military resources are currently available to European defence and how these may change post-Brexit and throughout the new US administration.

It also looks to establish the extent to which the UK and continental Europe are reliant upon Nato and the US in deterring and potentially responding to Russian aggression.

This inquiry will explore how the administrations can build upon the ‘special relationship’ to address such challenges.  

Former Cabinet minister argues for UK neutrality in Yemen

House of Commons

Parliament

Mitchell
HoC

Conservative former international development secretary Andrew Mitchell says at present the UK "supports a coalition that is not going to succeed".

He calls on the government to "move towards neutrality", asserting that both sides would accept British mediation in order to try to achieve a ceasefire. 

A ceasefire would allow the blockade to be lifted to help alleviate the famine there, he says. 

What are MPs debating?

Yemen conflict debate

House of Commons

Parliament

This afternoon's motion for backbench business debate, signed by Labour's Keith Vaz, Conservative Flick Drummond and the SNP's Alison Thewliss: 

That this House notes the worsening humanitarian crisis in Yemen; and calls upon the government to take a lead in passing a resolution at the UN Security Council that would give effect to an immediate ceasefire in Yemen.

'Extremely valuable' for UK to have nuclear deterrent

Defence committee

Select Committee

Parliament

Witnesses
BBC

Chair Julian Lewis asks about the UK nuclear deterrent and the continuing commitment to this from across the Atlantic. 

Mr Kramer tells the committee he believes it is "extremely valuable" to the US for the UK to have its own independent nuclear deterrent. 

In  July, MPs backed the renewal of Trident by 472 votes to 117 , approving the manufacture of four replacement submarines at a current estimated cost of £31bn.  

We are 'numb' to Yemen conflict - Keith Vaz

Yemen conflict debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Yemen
AFP

MPs are now taking part in a debate on  the conflict in Yemen , where devastation has been caused by a war between forces loyal to the internationally-recognised government of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi and those allied to the Houthi rebel movement.  

Leading the debate, Labour's Keith Vaz tells the House the scale of suffering is "unbelievable" and we have become "numb" to it, with public awareness of the war very low. 

MPs complete scrutiny of the Neighbourhood Planning Bill

Neighbourhood Planning Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Communities and Local Government Minister Gavin Barwell offers reassurance to Mr Herbert, pointing to plans to give parish councils greater involvement. 

MPs accept the government's amendments and the bill will now go for Royal Assent. 

Conservative MP questions government's localism agenda

Neighbourhood Planning Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Herbert
HoC

Conservative Nick Herbert speaks to two amendments on neighbourhood plans and new towns. 

He says he's concerned about neighbourhood plans being "undermined" by speculative development, and by a proposed new town near him in Horsham which he says is unwanted. 

He tells MPs that amendments in the Lords were designed to give councils compulsory purchase powers to buy land at below the market rate. 

Blair: Beyond reasonable doubt not needed for UWOs

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Blair
HoL

Former Met Police commissioner and crossbencher Lord Blair of Brougton says that Unexplained Wealth Orders (UWOs) are equivalent to search warrants.

He argues that the "beyond reasonable doubt" test is not needed for search warrants and should equally not be applied to UWOs.

He explains that a search warrant is needed "because you think something might be happening" and that you need the warrant to find proof.

Witness: NATO would 'fray and fragment' without the US

Defence committee

Select Committee

Parliament

Dr Julian Lewis
BBC

Committee Chair Julian Lewis asks if NATO is "dispensable" without the cooperation of the United States and its military power.

Prof. Bew emphasises that the United States is the "indispensable ally" and there is no serious organisation without them. 

The "political anchoring" of NATO would "fray and fragment" should the US decide they did not want to be part of it anymore, he adds.

James Black of RAND says the "political will" surrounding NATO would be "very difficult to achieve" without the US.

Peers should not dampen down new powers

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Crossbencher Lord Brown of Eaton-Under-Heywood does not support Lord Hodgson's amendment.

He says UWO are to be welcomed and adds that "we must do nothing to dampen them down at the outset".

Kramer: 'Mistake' for US to only focus on trade with China

Defence committee

Select Committee

Parliament

Conservative MP Bob Blackman says trade relations between the US and China are a "source of tension" and asks witnesses to comment.

Franklin Kramer of the Atlantic Council tells the committee that US policymakers only looking at trade to the detriment of security is a "mistake".

Read more about this topic here.

'Beyond reasonable doubt'

Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts
HoL

The first amendment to be debated comes from Conservative Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts who asks if the right balance has been struck between tackling criminality and limiting police intrusion.

His amendment requires the courts to be satisfied "beyond reasonable doubt" that the requirements have been met before issuing an Unexplained Wealth Order (UWO).

This, he argues, will protect people against vexatious activities.

Peers begin debate of the Criminal Finances Bill

House of Lords

Parliament

Banknotes
BBC

Peers now move on to the Criminal Finances Bill which aims to make tackling money laundering, corruption and counter terrorist financing easier.

The bill: 

  • Establishes "Unexplained Wealth Orders" which requires a person suspected of criminality to explain why they have received an unusual amount of money.
  • Creates a new powers which enable money stored in bank accounts to be confiscated if there is reasonable suspicion that the property is the proceeds of crime.
  • Requires people to provide relevant documents to cases covering money laundering and terrorist financing clauses

Land should be reserved for older people's housing - MP

Neighbourhood Planning Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Mann
BBC

Labour's John Mann asks whether the bill would allow for land to be designated for accommodating elderly people. 

He suggests this could be "a huge boost to the economy" driven by those who wish to downsize.