Press release

Number 10 Press Briefing - Morning From 12 October 2011

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

From the Prime Minister's spokesperson on Defence Secretary Liam Fox, Iran, Scottish and Southern Energy, unemployment and the Finucane family.

Defence Secretary Liam Fox

Asked whether the Defence Secretary was carrying on with his job, the Prime Minister’s Spokesman (PMS) confirmed he was. Asked for the Prime Minister’s views on the matter, the PMS said the Prime Minister said he was keen for the facts to be established.

Asked several questions on the progress of the investigation by the Cabinet secretary, the PMS said the process was ongoing and it was important for all outstanding issues to be addressed and that there would be no official comment on the process until it had been completed.

Iran

Asked if the UK was preparing any measures against Iran in light of allegations of a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to the US, the PMS said the UK was in close touch with the United States and would support measures to hold Iran accountable for its actions, including further sanctions.

Scottish and Southern Energy

Asked if the Prime Minister welcomed moves by Scottish and Southern Energy to open up the energy market, the PMS said anything that increased competition in that market and was good for consumers would be something he would support.

Unemployment figures

Asked if there would be a response to the latest figures on unemployment and whether there was a fear they indicated a double-dip recession, the PMS said it was clear that we were seeing the effects of the international economic crisis on the UK labour market. The government was focused on doing everything it could to support people who found themselves out of a job. That was why we had put in place the work programme which offered tailored support to help people back into work.

Asked if unemployment would continue to rise, the PMS said that the government did not provide forecasts for unemployment.

Finucane

Asked if there would be a statement on the Finucane family, the PMS said one would be made later that day by the Secretary of State.