Asked if anything had been decided at the European Council regarding Portugal, the Prime Minister’s Spokesperson (PMS)told the assembled press that a decision hadn’t been made, but confirmed that the matter was discussed as part of a broader discussion on economic growth.
Asked if the Prime Minister was pleased that having children means he can claim more expenses, the PMS said that it was the Prime Minister’s view that it’s right that it’s no longer MPs or the Government that set their own expenses. He agrees that IPSA was not perfect and welcomes the steps they have taken towards addressing some of the problems - including making the system more family friendly. The PMS said that the system remains under review and that there is more to be done. Expenses should be transparent, cost effective and acceptable to the public.
Asked what has happened to the Prime Minister’s deadline to IPSA to sort itself out, the PMS said that the announcement was a significant step in right direction.
Asked which areas the Prime Minister thinks need improvement, the PMS said that the detail needs to be looked at and that this is for MPs to do. The PMS welcomed the family friendly aspects of the new rules.
Asked whether there was anything new to report on NATO, the PMS pointed to the text issued by the European Council which underlines the support for the UN resolution. The PMS said that NATO had agreed to carry out the arms embargo, no fly zone and had agreed to plan for the third aspect - protecting the population.
Asked if the Prime Minister would welcome Yvonne Fletcher’s alleged killer facing a British Court, the PMS said that there is a criminal investigation on going and wouldn’t comment further. The PMS noted that there were no specific extradition arrangements in place.