HC Deb 26 April 1944 vol 399 cc744-5
5. Mr. Mander

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will consider the advisability of consulting with other members of the United Nations with a view to the adoption of a flag, emblem or other symbol to be used, in addition to national emblems, as a visual expression of Allied unity both during the war and in the building-up of the new world peace organisation decided on at the Moscow Conference.

15. Mr. Vernon Bartlett

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will consult the leaders of the other United Nations as to the advisability of adopting a United Nations flag, in order to make clear the international status of U.N.R.R.A. and other United Nations commissions which will be called upon to co-operate in areas now under enemy control.

Mr. Eden

I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply which my right hon. Friend the Minister of State gave to the hon. Member for Maldon (Mr. Driberg) on 29th June, 1943. As stated on that occasion, this matter is one which concerns all the United Nations, whose views are unlikely to have been formulated as yet. His Majesty's Government doubt, there- fore, whether the very complicated discussions, in which it would be necessary to engage if my hon. Friend's suggestion were adapted, would produce any fruitful result or reveal any consensus of opinion at present. Moreover, these consultations would inevitably take a very long time, and I do not think that this is quite the moment to embark upon them.

Mr. Mander

Is any flag being used by U.N.R.R.A., or similar organisations, at the present time?

Mr. Eden

Not that I know of.

Mr. Bartlett

Cannot the British Government take the initiative in a matter like this? Why must 'we always say: "This is a matter for all the United Nations"? Would it not be much more impressive to have one flag flying over Hitler's palace in Berlin than a couple of dozen flags, for all the United Nations?

Hon. Members


Mr. Eden

I think that is a matter of assessment.

Mr. Gallacher

Is it not a fact that all the principal flags, whatever their other colours, have a piece of red on them?

Mr. Eden

The hon. Gentleman has most helpfully illustrated the difficulties which might arise.

Mr. Mander

In view of the unsatisfactory nature of the reply, I beg to give notice that I will raise this matter on the Adjournment.