HC Deb 04 November 1954 vol 532 cc598-9
48. Mr. A. Henderson

asked the Prime Minister whether he is now in a position to state the date of the next Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference.

The Prime Minister

I have recently been in communication with the Prime Ministers of the other members of the Commonwealth about the holding of a further meeting between us. Many events of great importance in the international field have taken place since our last meeting at the time of the Coronation. These will be among the principal subjects for our consideration when, as we have now agreed, a meeting of Commonwealth Prime Ministers is held in London, opening on 31st January.

I know that the House will join me in welcoming this opportunity for consultation with the Heads of other Commonwealth Governments, from which I am confident that, as on former occasions, general benefit will result.

Mr. Henderson

I welcome that announcement, but does the Prime Minister recollect the communiqué issued after the 1953 Conference? It stated that the Prime Ministers had considered the state of relations with the Soviet Union and had agreed that every possible step should be taken to settle the differences at present dividing the world. Would not the suggested meeting between the Prime Minister and Prime Minister Malenkov be a possible step towards settling those differences? Further, would he endeavour to secure the approval of his colleagues at this Conference to such a meeting—in principle, at any rate?

The Prime Minister

No subject will be excluded from the discussions of the visiting Ministers.