Press release

Number 10 Press Briefing - Afternoon From 23 June 2011

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

From the Prime Minister's spokesperson on: bailout, Libya, burglary and circus animals.

Bailout

Asked if the Prime Minister (PM) had any conversations with Chancellor Merkel regarding bailout mechanisms, the Prime Minister’s Spokesman (PMS) said that there had not been any recent conversations but that the two of them had discussed the issue previously.

Libya

Asked if the PM thought that the cost for the Libya Military Operation was value for money, the PMS responded that it was the right thing to do to take action in Libya, and that thousands of lives had been saved as a result. He pointed out that the figures announced today were an estimate of the additional costs for a period of six months.

Asked if the PM agreed with Sir Richard Dannatt when he said that the costs were ‘small beer’, the PMS said that he would not use that phrase.

Burglary

Asked if the stabbing in Salford would affect the PM’s thinking on householders defending their property, the PMS said no it would not but that he was unable to comment on an individual case.

Circus animals

Asked about Number Ten’s approach to defeating the motion, the PMS confirmed that there are significant impediments to banning the use of circus animals entirely. He said that the Government had received advice that there was a strong likelihood of legal challenge, which would lead to cost to the tax payers if successful. This was why we had proposed introducing a licensing regime.

Asked if the Government was relaxed about this debate, the PMS confirmed that it was.

Asked for the PM’s personal view on the ban, the PMS said that the PM understood that there is strong public feeling about this issue, but also pointed out that the Government had to take into account the legal advice that said if there was a ban at the present time there could be a legal challenge that would be an extra cost to the tax payer if successful.