HC Deb 17 April 1946 vol 421 cc2686-7
82. Colonel J. R. H. Hutchison

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what steps he has taken to ensure that the recently concluded agreement between Russia and Persia does not conflict with, or have adverse effects upon, the supply of oil to this country from Persia.

Mr. Bevin

The published terms of the agreement are being studied by His Majesty's Government. As far as we can see it does not impinge upon our oil supplies from Persia. We have not objected to the Soviet Government making arrangements for obtaining oil from Northern Persia, but we urged that negotiations to this end should not be conducted under duress. We are desirous of making further contracts with the Persian Government but we have been aware that the question should not be re-opened before the withdrawal of foreign troops in accordance with the Treaty of 1942 was completed. His Majesty's Government have strictly respected this. His Majesty's Government will, of course, continue to give very close attention to this vital matter.

Mr. Blackburn

Will my right hon. Friend make it plain that the interests of this country in this matter are not financial oil interests, as suggested in this Question, but the interests of peace and security throughout the world?

Mr. Bevin

That is why we objected to forcing the Persian Government to negotiate with Russian troops on her soil.

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