HC Deb 29 March 1944 vol 398 cc1414-5
14. Mr. Ivor Thomas

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has studied recent speeches by M. van Kleffens, Foreign Minister of the Netherlands, and General de Gaulle, for France, asking for a closer association of the nations of Western Europe, on the lines adumbrated by General Smuts; and whether he will take soundings among the governments of these nations with a view to ascertaining the extent of this desire.

Mr. Eden

A study of recent speeches by the three statesmen mentioned does not suggest that they were thinking on exactly the same lines, but I can assure the hon. Member that His Majesty's Government maintain close touch with all Allied Governments with whom there is a constant exchange of views.

Mr. Thomas

Is my right hon. Friend aware that the nations of Western Europe are awaiting a lead from His Majesty's Government and are prepared to go exactly as far as they will go?

Mr. Eden

It has been made quite clear that His Majesty's Government prefer European unity rather than a division of Europe into any spheres of influence.