» Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Memorial Service for Victims of Terror

Asked to comment on demands for compensation for victim’s families, the PMOS first said that the memorial service would be to remember thirteen British people who had been killed last year in terrorist attacks in Egypt, Turkey and Qatar. Tessa Jowell had been working with those who had lost loved ones to support them and better see how we could support British people who might be victims of terrorist attacks overseas. We were looking at possible options to help those who were injured or had lost loved ones. Our scheme compensated people who were injured in this country no matter where they were from. Many countries had similar reciprocal agreements. The problem arose where such schemes did not exist in certain countries. We were looking at the options to bridge that gap. It may take some time as it involved working with other countries. In the mean time we had introduced a £1 million charitable fund to provide immediate financial help for those caught up in terrorist attacks elsewhere in the world.

Asked whether they were covered by insurance, the PMOS said that he could not expertly talk about what insurance policies people took out. Irrespective of that there was a problem. If a foreign national were injured in this country they were entitled to compensation. The aim was to get to a situation where that applied in other countries as well. The problem now was where that did not happen.

Asked whether the 13 victims being remembered today would get money, many of whose families felt aggrieved, the PMOS said that would depend on the individual circumstances and whether they applied for compensation. We recognised that they felt aggrieved. We were trying to deal with the problem and this was why the £1 million charitable fund was there. It was not however, right for him to get into individual cases.

Asked who was reviewing the situation, the PMOS said that the relevant officials were talking to foreign governments to see what could be done. It was an issue that was cross-government involving the Home Office and other departments as well. Tessa Jowell was the minister for victims and she continued to take a lead role so journalists should speak to DCMS for more information.

Briefing took place at 6:00 | Search for related news

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