HC Deb 09 July 1952 vol 503 cc1286-7
12. Mr. A. Henderson

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will make a statement on the present constitutional position in Korea.

Mr. Selwyn Lloyd

Yes, Sir. On 4th July the South Korean National Assembly passed, by 163 votes to nil, with three abstentions, a compromise Constitutional Amendment Bill with the following provisions, among others: a bicameral National Assembly to be elected by popular vote; the President and Vice-President to be elected by direct and secret popular vote for a term of four years; the Prime Minister to be appointed by the President with the consent of the Assembly; the Cabinet to be appointed by the President on the Prime Minister's recommendation, and to be confirmed by a simple majority vote of the National Assembly. I understand that these amendments will come into force at once and that the direct election of the President by popular vote will be held by 14th July.

Mr. Edelman

Is it not a case that these amendments were made under the duress of Mr. Syngman Rhee, and in those circumstances do Her Majesty's Government propose to continue to recognise Syngman Rhee's Government as the properly elected constitutional Government of South Korea?

Mr. Lloyd

I think these proposals represent a fair compromise between the parties, but what we should like to see is that they should be followed up by the removal of martial law and the holding of the trials before civil courts.