Friday, July 10, 2009

Other events of the week

Monday, my own Question on the recent investigation by the UN Rapporteur on Indigenous People on the recent violence and deaths in the Peruvian Amazon: good supplementaries from Shirley Williams and Susan Thomas on the LibDem bench, plus Lords Howells, Jenkin of Roding and Brooke of Sutton Mandeville from the Tories, and the Bishop of Exeter. No Labour backbenchers.

Also asked a supplementary on Baroness Hanham's Question on the lack if washing or sleeping facilities for people detained overnight at Heathrow airport,

Wednesday, attended the Parliamentary Human Rights Group (PHRG) and was re-elected vice-chair. I founded the Group in 1976 and was chair for the first 21 years, then after Ann Clwyd was elected chair in 1997, have been vice-chair. Nowadays there are All-Party Groups on every subject under the sun, but the PHRG has been one of the most successful, judging from the number of references to human rights in Hansard. In 1975 as a whole there were 225 references to “human rights” in the Commons, compared with 742 in December 2008 alone.

Thursday, attended the 25th Anniversary of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association, another organisation I have had a friendly and useful relationship with since theur earliest days. Said a few words in praise of their work and particularly Alison Harvey, their General Secretary, who does a tremendous job.

Today I had an x-ray of my right knee and a visit to the physiotherapist at Dulwich Hospital, who said it was osteoarthritis. Unfortunately as in the Belloc poem, there is no cure for this disease. It can be slowed down by doing some boring exercises.

Now its just after midnight, and we will be setting off for Victoria coach station ina few minutes to pick up Kosta, my great-nephew, who has arrived at Luton and is staying with us for a few days. And tomorrow, JW arrives back from Spain with his girlfriend Maite so the house is filling up.

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