§ 43. Mrs. Castle
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the negotiations with the United States Government for the extension of the proving ground for guided missiles in the West Indies have yet been concluded and with what result.
§ The Joint Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Douglas Dodds-Parker)
No, Sir. The agreement between the United States Government and Her Majesty's Government to extend the Bahamas long-range proving ground for guided missiles to St. Lucia in the West Indies has not yet been signed.
§ Mrs. Castle
Can the hon. Member tell the House whether the base at St. Lucia has been reactivated by the United States Air Force and is now in fact being used for guided-missile purposes? If so, is not that quite wrong, in view of the fact that no agreement has been concluded or put before this House?
§ Mr. Dodds-Parker
No, Sir. American forces have, however, been allowed to enter St. Lucia to construct a guided-missile tracking station. I am confident that agreement will be reached before this is brought into operation.
§ Mrs. Castle
On 8th February the hon. Gentleman told the hon. Member for Blackpool, South (Sir R. Robinson) that these bases could not be reactivated for guided-missile purposes without a separate agreement being concluded with the United States. Is it not quite wrong for this work to go ahead, first, before an agreement has been concluded, and, secondly, before such agreement has been placed before this House for its approval?