HC Deb 10 July 1957 vol 573 cc365-6
25. Mr. Baird

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what information he has received, as co-Chairman of the Geneva Conference on Indo-China, concerning the state of communications between North and South Vietnam.

Mr. Selwyn Lloyd

I have received no information on this point in my capacity as a co-Chairman of the Geneva Confer- ence on Indo-China apart from that contained in the Interim Reports of the International Control Commission in Vietnam, all of which have been published as White Papers.

Mr. Baird

Is the Foreign Secretary aware that there is no postal communication at all between North and South Vietnam at present, and the reason is that the South Vietnam Government will not allow it? Is that not most inhuman, because people in the North with relatives in the South have no means of postal communication at present? As co-Chairman of the Geneva Conference, will he with his co-Chairmen take steps to see that normal relationships exist between North and South Vietnam?

Mr. Lloyd

Of course we hope that one day normal relations will exist and that the country will be unified, but the question is how best to create the conditions in which that is likely to happen. I do not think the attitude taken by the hon. Member is likely to produce that situation.

Mr. Bevan

May I ask what the Foreign Secretary means by that? All my hon. Friend has suggested is that, first of all, the Agreement should be carried out. Of course, it is a matter for discussion when it should be fully implemented. Surely every hon. Member, in all parts of the House, would want to assist the establishment of free postal communication between the two halves of the country if unity is eventually to be realised.

Mr. Lloyd

What I was referring to particularly was that I do not think it really helps to refer to South Vietnam as a Fascist State.