HC Deb 15 February 1954 vol 523 cc1640-1
41. Mr. Emrys Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will explain in detail the proposed nature of the free elections which Her Majesty's Government have suggested should be held for a unified Germany.

Mr. Selwyn Lloyd

This is explained in some detail in the Plan for German Reunification which my right hon. Friend tabled at the Berlin Conference on 29th January. Copies of this Plan have been made available in the Library, and I would direct the hon. Gentleman's attention to the first two and a half pages.

Mr. Hughes

Will the Minister explain whether the free elections we are advocating are of the same kind as those that prevailed in West Germany at the last election, when there was no limit to the election expenses and when the Social Democrats were under an obvious disadvantage because of the enormous sums that Dr. Adenauer had to spend? Is that what the Government mean by free elections?

Mr. Lloyd

I mean free elections entered into after arrangements have been made by agreement between all concerned as to the conditions under which they should take place.

Mr. Hughes

Does the right hon. and learned Gentleman mean like the British free elections?

Mr. Lloyd

By free elections I mean elections which will be free.

Mr. Warbey

Is the right hon. and learned Gentleman aware that most of us on this side of the House are fully in agreement with the policy of seeking to hold free elections along the lines he has indicated, but that the rest of his policy makes that impossible?