Monday, January 18, 2010


Kina had her knee replacement operation this morning, and came through it with flying colours. She rang up this evening in good spirits, to ask me to send her the Christian Morgenstern poem Das Knie, which I have done:

Ein Knie geht einsam durch die Welt.
Es ist ein Knie, sonst nichts!
Es ist kein Baum! Es ist kein Zelt!
Es ist ein Knie, sonst nichts.

Im Kriege ward einmal ein Mann
erschossen um und um.
Das Knie allein blieb unverletzt -
als wär's ein Heiligtum.

Seitdem geht's einsam durch die Welt.
Es ist ein Knie, sonst nichts.
Es ist kein Baum, es ist kein Zelt.
Es ist ein Knie, sonst nichts.

This afternoon I joined in Anthony Lester's Question about the Foreign Office's representations to Libya about opposition leaders in Libya such as Jabella Matar who have been kept in secret prisons for many years without access to lawyers or family. I asked whether the Government would publish a list of the individuals about whom they had made representations, together with the text of the answers received. I also suggested that we should consult with other EU states to produce a consolidated account of all the approaches to the Libyan authorities and their replies, for presentation to the Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review of Libya next year. The Minister said they would take those suggestions on board.

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