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Summary

  1. Commons started with questions to the culture secretary followed by the attorney general
  2. Leader of the House Andrea Leadsom set out future business
  3. Two statements on a parliamentary complaints policy and supported housing
  4. Debate on Russian interference in UK politics
  5. Peers take part in debates on climate change and ivory trade

Live Reporting

By Esther Webber, Kate Whannel and Richard Morris

All times stated are UK

  1. Happy Christmas...and see you in the new year

    That's where we leave our coverage of Parliament - the last debate of 2017.

    Thank you for following us here and we hope you'll join us for more parliamentary coverage in 2018.

  2. End of business in the Lords

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Peers are giving their traditional end-of-year thanks to retiring members of staff before they rise for the Christmas recess.

    The House of Lords returns on 7 January 2018.

  3. Responses from the government

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Michael Ellis

    "It was all going so well," Deputy Leader of the House Michael Ellis says, until the "last part", referring to Karin Smyth saying she hopes that next year will bring a Labour government for the UK.

    Responding to Sir Paul Beresford, he says that in the UK, there is much more work to be done on the issue of cancer treatments, but 7,000 more people are alive today than there would have been thanks to new treatments.

    He tells Jamie Stone that the Scottish government has had the funding for broadband in rural Scotland since 2014, but the Scottish government haven't used it yet.

    Referring to Lyn Brown's points, he says a consultation has been launched by the government on fixed odds betting terminals.

    He says to Nigel Huddleston that most members "get on very well across this House," and can disagree professionally, but have a chat otherwise.

    He invites Deirdre Brock to declare anything more she knows about Scottish and NI funding in the Leave campaign to the House, for it to be discussed further.

    He tells Siobhain McDonagh that the government is putting in £1bn into tackling homelessness and rough sleeping.

    He wraps up by thanking the whole House for their work and their protection of the Houses of Parliament, as well as thanking the Armed Forces.

  4. 'Fairly sombre debate' - Labour

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Karin Smyth

    Opposition spokesperson Karin Smyth is summing up for Labour, saying it has been "a fairly sombre debate this afternoon," and she says whatever side of the House members sit on, "our constituents often face the same problems".

    She thanks those who work in the community to provide public services, even at a time of enormous pressure, she adds.

    She congratulates Bristol City on their 2-1 win against Manchester United last night.

    She'll be catching up with The Crown and wants to see The Last Jedi, she says.

    She wishes everyone across the House a safe, happy and peaceful Christmas.

    Finally, she hopes that next year will bring about a Labour government.

  5. 128,000 children will be homeless on Christmas morning - Labour MP

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Siobhain McDonagh

    Labour's Siobhain McDonagh says that 128,000 children will wake up homeless on Christmas morning, and over half the homeless households in London are in work, she adds.

    She says that a quarter of temporary accommodation is only inspected by councils once the tenants have left.

    She says that 22,000 families have been moved in England to another borough, often without the receiving borough being given any information about their arrival.

  6. Government defends ivory ban exemptions

    Ivory debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Gardiner

    Environment Minister Lord Gardiner of Kimble responds to the debate, stressing the need to "do everything we can to make sure future generations do not inherit a world without elephants".

    He outlines the government's promise to ban the sale of ivory objects which contribute directly or indirectly to poaching - currently the subject of a consultation which ends on 29 December.

    He says ministers "recognise a case" for some items to be exempt, including musical instruments, objects with a small amount of ivory, and items of historic or artistic interest - adding that this will not be finalised until the end of the consultation.

    These exceptions apply where artefacts have a value independent of their ivory content, he explains.

  7. Allow reporting of Scottish/Northern Irish Brexit funding - SNP

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Deirdre Brock

    The SNP's Deidre Brock calls for halting new rules on reporting of donations made between Scottish and Northern Irish organisations during the EU referendum. She says potential moving of the dates would disable transparency on this kind of funding.

    She says the Constitutional Research Council gave money to the DUP's Leave campaign in Northern Ireland. It has also funded the European Research Group and the Chairman of that group, Exiting the EU Minister Steve Baker, she says.

    She believes there should be a debate on this in the new year.

  8. Labour: Ivory ban exemptions are too vague

    Ivory debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Shadow environment spokesperson Baroness Jones of Whitchurch winds up this afternoon's debate on the ivory trade for Labour, pointing out that there is widespread support for tackling an industry associated with "cruel and unnecessary slaughter".

    She says whatever action is taken it needs to be "operable, simple and deliverable".

    On the question of exemptions, she says there should be an end to the distinction between pre- and post-1947 antiques, as it's unworkable.

    She adds that the exception for works of art is overly "vague".

  9. Call for cross-party work to tackle online abuse

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Nigel Huddleston

    Conservative Nigel Huddleston says he is very concerned by "what's happening online".

    He says that generally, MPs in the House of Commons do get along; they do sometimes "vehemently disagree," but he says while Parliamentarians have opinions, it doesn't "necessarily mean that we're right".

    He says that different Parliamentarians may look at the same data and see different points.

    He says if MPs are using a hashtag which is then being exploited by another group, then it is incumbent upon them to distance themselves from the trend.

    It can be "disheartening" that "occasionally in this place...to hear people insinuate that because I'm a Tory, therefore I wake up in the morning wanting to hurt poor or disabled people, that is so far from the reality, it's downright offensive," he says.

    "If anybody believes that in a public debate sphere or forum, then I feel really sorry for them," he adds.

    He finishes by calling for cross-party work to call out abuse against people online.

  10. Newham poverty raised

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Lyn Brown

    Labour's Lyn Brown is using her speech to discuss poverty in Newham. She says that research suggests that 13 out of 20 children in Newham live in poverty.

    Newham is one of the areas of highest deprivation in the country, she says, and has one of the highest number of betting shops in any borough

    There are "81 in operation, 12 on one street alone," she says.

    "Newham Council estimate that £20m of residents' money was lost to Fixed Odds Betting Machines in just one year," she says.

    She says she has called for a reduction in the maximum stake to £2. She says a £2 limit would help to stop problem gambling. It would be a "great, if belated Christmas present" to the children of Newham, she adds.

  11. Ex-Met chief backs ivory sale ban

    Ivory debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Hogan-Howe

    Ex-Metropolitan Police chief and crossbencher Lord Hogan-Howe is giving his maiden speech. He speaks of his 38 years in the service, saying he has "never lost the thrill of arresting the bad guy to help the good guy".

    Turning to the topic for debate, he says he backs a ban on ivory for domestic sale, but notes this still leaves the way open for a loophole via gifts and exchange.

    He warns that the exemption for items of artistic and historical value is "too subjective and too broadly drawn".

  12. Improve connectivity in Scotland - Lib Dem MP

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Jamie Stone

    Liberal Democrat Jamie Stone uses his speech to call for increased connectivity in his constituency of Caithness, Sutherland & Easter Ross.

    He says that broadband and energy "do not respect national boundaries", adding that people in his constituency struggle with Universal Credit claims because broadband is so slow, and he sees energy connectivity is still not good for his constituencies.

    He finishes by thanking all the staff for introducing him to the House of Commons over the past six months.

  13. HPV vaccinations for men and women?

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Sir Paul Beresford

    Conservative Sir Paul Beresford is using his general debate speech to call for vaccination of HPV for both girls and boys.

    He says that the virus is mostly harmless, but there are two types which are dangerous to humans, and can cause illnesses.

    The prevalence of head and neck cancers is one of the fastest increasing in the UK, he says the cancer is also more suffered by men.

    There is a link between the two, he says, cervical cancer is linked to HPV and head and neck cancers are linked to HPV in men, he adds.

  14. MPs turn to general debate

    General adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Bob Blackman

    As is customary before any recess, the House of Commons now turns to a general debate on "matters to be raised before the forthcoming adjournment". MPs may raise any topic as part of the debate.

    Conservative Bob Blackman says that his Homelessness Reduction Act was one of the last pieces of legislation to be given Royal Assent before the general election. He says it is both the longest and most expensive private members' bill in history, but will change how homeless people are treated.

  15. Peer raises questions on destruction of ivory

    Ivory debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Carrington

    In the Lords, Conservative Lord Carrington of Fulham is opening his debate on a motion that this House takes note of the impact of the trade in ivory on endangered species, and of the efforts being made to eliminate that trade while protecting the cultural heritage of antique ivory.

    He tells peers "the first priority is to protect elephants" and while the trade of post-1947 ivory objects is already illegal, "the current ban has not worked".

    He discusses the difficulty of discerning which antique ivory objects are of "museum quality" and therefore should not be destroyed.

  16. RT under fire in the Commons

    Russian interference debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Matt Hancock

    Matt Hancock, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Minister says that tomorrow the Foreign Secretary will be in Russia and will have discussions with the Russian government about disinformation.

    "The SNP needs to take a cold hard look at itself," Mr Hancock says, referring to the fact that former SNP leader Alex Salmond now has a programme on the Kremlin-backed RT broadcaster.

    "It is vital that we do not surrender our own values of liberal democracy" in response to Russian disinformation, the minister says.

    He says that Ofcom has found RT to be in breach of broadcasters' code on 13 occasions.

    "Our best defence is our critical faculties," Mr Hancock says.

    He says the government may take a view, but the National Cyber Security Centre is only able to respond to direct hacking, rather than take views on disinformation or bots being used.

  17. 'Constant vigilance'

    Russian interference debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Liam Byrne

    The SNPs Europe spokesman Stephen Gethins says that Russia is "a wonderful country with a rich history".

    However, he says, President Putin has had a "devastating impact" on his own people and urges the UK to work with the EU to stabilise countries threatened by the Russian Federation.

    Shadow digital economy minister Liam Byrne says it is "ludicrous" that the national security strategy does not include an objective to defend "the integrity of our democracy".

    "The price of freedom is constant vigilance," he says.

  18. Call out malign Russian intent - Conservative MP

    Russian interference debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Bob Seely

    Before becoming an MP Conservative Bob Seely worked as a journalist in the Soviet Union.

    He stresses the importance of "calling out malign Russian intent" and makes a recommendation.

    He says that in 1980s America a powerful intelligence committee was set up to "inoculate society against the lies that are told".

    He calls for the UK Parliament to emulate this.