HC Deb 25 April 1955 vol 540 cc618-9
52. Mr. Warbey

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will make a statement on his discussions with the French Foreign Minister.

Mr. H. Macmillan

In response to my invitation, the French Foreign Minister came to London on 21st April. I am most grateful to Monsieur Pinay for having found the time, amongst his many other preoccupations, for this short visit to London. My main purpose in inviting Monsieur Pinay was to establish a personal contact. Both the Prime Minister and I had most useful discussions with him on a wide range of current topics. I am happy to say that, as might be expected, these discussions showed a close identity of view between us.

Mr. Warbey

Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether discussions took place about the possibility of collective action to ensure the carrying out of the Geneva Agreement, especially in regard to Viet Nam, where elections have to be prepared within the next two or three months?

Mr. Macmillan

We certainly discussed the problems of the Far East and this and other relevant topics.

Mr. Noel-Baker

Will the right hon. Gentleman take every opportunity of impressing on both the French and the German Government that, while we have no desire to interfere in their internal affairs or their mutual questions, nevertheless the settlement of outstanding Franco-German questions is of vital interest, not only to those two countries, but to Europe as a whole?

Mr. Macmillan

I am grateful for that suggestion also and I assure the right hon. Gentleman that we do all that we can to do just that kind of service to our friends.

Mr. Fenner Brockway

May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether discussions took place on this occasion regarding the policy of France in North Africa and whether Her Majesty's Government endorsed that policy?

Mr. Macmillan

No, Sir. Either to endorse or to disapprove is not really the kind of approach to the problem which I would wish to take. These matters are all discussed in so far as they affect our mutual interests.