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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 May 2006, 11:57 GMT 12:57 UK
Point-by-point: Question time
All the main points from prime minister's questions in the House of Commons on Wednesday 10 May, from 1200 BST.

  • Prime Minister Tony Blair sent condolences to the families of the five service people "missing believed killed" following an incident in Iraq.

  • Mr Blair said the country owed them, and others who had lost their lives, "a great debt of gratitude". He praised their "heroism, professionalism and commitment".

  • Asked about special compensation for 7 July bomb victims, he said there would be an announcement shortly.

  • Conservative leader David Cameron also paid tribute to the service people killed in Iraq.

  • In his first question, he asked why Jane Kennedy, the hospitals minister, had resigned, over reforms to her local children's hospital.

  • Mr Cameron also asked if it was all going so well with the government why did Mr Blair sack home secretary Charles Clarke. Mr Cameron said the government was "paralysed" and former ministers were queuing up to call on Mr Blair to stand down.

  • Mr Blair defended the position on children's hospitals and freed foreign prisoners and he taunted Mr Cameron over his lack of policies - saying the only ones he could find related to children's clothes and chocolate oranges.

  • Mr Cameron said the prime minister would not address his departure date. He quoted a leaked Number 10 planning committee report on the local election results, which said: "People were angry with Tony because they love him so much and they were angry that he might go". Mr Cameron said this was "the view from the bunker". He asked if Mr Blair would serve a full third term.

  • Mr Blair said he would not debate that - he said he wanted to talk about policy, "which will ultimately determine the fate of this government".

  • The issue of how long Mr Blair remains in office is of key public interest, said Mr Cameron.

  • "You said that when you went to Khartoum. Presumably you wanted to see the place where Gordon was murdered!", he said to howls of Tory laughter at the reference to the 1885 killing of British general Charles Gordon in the siege of Khartoum.

  • "Why doesn't he trust Mr Brown to take over as p0rime minister?", asked Mr Cameron.

  • Mr Blair said Mr Cameron had been rehearsing his lines all morning. Four previous Tory leaders had called for him to go and he was still here and they weren't, he said.

  • Mr Cameron said there were hardly any politicians in the place who were not calling for him to go. " "Isn't it increasingly clear that you should go and go soon?"

  • Mr Blair said it was important to deliver Labour's manifesto. He said there was "one difference" between himself and Mr Cameron - he was delivering his party's last manifesto, Mr Cameron had written his party's last manifesto and then turned his back on it.

  • Liberal Democrat leader Sir Menzies Campbell offered his condolences to the service men and women's family.

  • He asked if the prime minister understood "the extent of anxiety and hardship in rural areas caused by the government's handling of the single farm payment scheme".

  • Mr Blair said it was important the changes made in the past few months were kept going so people would get the money they are due.

  • Rather than focusing on personalities in a reshuffle, when would Mr Blair do something about Defra, the NHS and other departments in trouble, asked Sir Menzies.

  • "We are doing something about the national health service", replied Mr Blair, but difficult changes were being put through and the important thing was to hit an 18 week waiting target, he added.

  • Mr Blair said there would be negotiations on a small arms treaty at a forthcoming UN summit which he hoped would succeed.

  • Answering a question from Patrick Mercer, Conservative Newark, Mr Blair said every foreigner who is in prison should be deported, not necessarily those convicted of an imprisonable offence, who might not be sent to prison.

  • On Deep Vein Thrombosis, Mr Blair said an independent expert working group would report in the next few weeks.
  • Nadine Dorries, Conservative Mid Beds, asked about a constituent who fired a pellet gun at a stray dog and was locked up for hours by the police. Mr Blair said he did not know the facts of the case and, as a result, was wary of commenting on it.

  • Labour MP Tom Clarke asked about Darfur, Mr Blair said it was important Sudan ended opposition to UN forces and the UK and US were urgently looking at whether there was enough "firepower" to deal with the problems there. He said there should be a standing African army to deal with humanitarian crises.

  • Tory John Maples attacked John Prescott's "nine years of unremitting incompetence", adding it was "better to pay the deputy prime minister for not running a department than running one".
  • Mr Blair said the Conservatives' last deputy prime minister, Michael Heseltine, had caused the Tories worst ever election result and Mr Prescott had presided over three election victories.

  • "I prefer Prezza to Hezza," added Mr Blair.




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