§ Mr. Baker
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department for what reasons he proposes to extend to three months the validity of interception warrants under the Interception of Communications Act 1985. 
§ Mr. Straw
The Government's proposals for legislation to replace the Interception of Communications Act 1985 are contained in a consultation paper which I published on 22 June. The reasons behind the proposal to extend the authorisation period of warrants are explained in this document, which is available in the Library, beginning at paragraph 7.12.
§ Mr. Straw
I am not aware of any discussions this year between Ministers and United States citizens specifically about the United Kingdom's interception regime. However, my hon. Friend the Minister of State, Home Office met senior members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drugs Enforcement Agency and Attorney-General's Department in the United States last month. He discussed a wide range of issues relevant to the fight against organised crime. Interception was discussed in the context of the Government's proposals 115W for legislation to maintain law enforcement agencies' capabilities against encrypted stored data and communications.