HC Deb 24 April 1941 vol 371 c260
54. Mr. Mander

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs the present position with regard to the negotiation of a trade agreement and general settlement with Russia?

The Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Butler)

I regret that I cannot report any progress with these matters so far; but I need hardly say that His Majesty's Government will always be ready, when a favourable occasion offers, to discuss questions of common concern with the Soviet Government, with the object of settling all outstanding questions in a manner which would be equally beneficial to both parties.

Mr. Price

Can the Minister say whether the status of the Baltic States is one of the causes of difficulty in this matter?

Mr. Butler

I think it is a subject which could well be discussed.

Mr. Cocks

Why do we continue to say that the next move must come from Russia and not from ourselves, whereas Russia says just the opposite? Cannot that be cleared up in an ordinary common-sense way?