HC Deb 23 January 1958 vol 580 cc1249-51
46 Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Prime Minister (1) whether he will propose that the Powers signing the nonaggression pact he has offered the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics should undertake to suspend thermonuclear weapon tests, subject only to the establishment of inspection posts, pending agreement on other aspects of disarmament;

(2) whether he will propose, as part of the non-aggression pact offered to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, that the parties to the pact should refrain from establishing nuclear weapon bases in the territories, or providing nuclear weapons to the forces of Germany and the European People's Democracies, or to forces stationed in their territories;

(3) whether he will propose that the Powers signing the non-aggression pact should negotiate a European settlement on the basis of unifying Germany by democratic means within the United Nations and an all-European treaty implementing the Charter, but outside the rival alliances, and accompanied by an agreement to reduce, limit and control armaments and progressively to thin out and withdraw all foreign forces from the territories of Germany and her neighbours.

Mr. R. A. Butler

I have been asked to reply.

These three Questions are closely related to the proposals in Mr. Bulganin's letter of 8th January and, as I informed the House on 21st January, the Prime Minister will be replying in due course to this letter. I have, therefore, nothing further to add at present.

Mr. Zilliacus

Does not the right hon. Gentleman agree that when offering a non-aggression pact—to quote the Prime Minister—"words should be followed by deeds", and that it is inappropriate that we should offer a non-aggression treaty and at the same time introduce nuclear weapons where they do not exist, thereby aggravating the situation? Is it not appropriate, in offering a non-aggression treaty, to renounce the idea of trying to bring Germany into the Western alliance and to get some basis on which negotiations are possible?

Mr. Butler

I am afraid that the hon. Member has brought so many different considerations into his supplementary question that it would be wrong of me to answer them in detail. I would only ask the House to await the considered reply which my right hon. Friend is sending to Mr. Bulganin.

Mr. Pickthorn

Will my right hon. Friend consider whether it is necessary to remind, if not the Prime Minister, at least Mr. Bulganin, of the declaration by the Prime Minister—I think it was last June—following all his predecessors in authority in this country and in the United States, of the necessity in any non-aggression pact of avoiding implicit de jure recognition of the Russian occupation of East Europe?

Mr. Butler

I feel sure that my right hon. Friend will be aware of that, and I will certainly bring to his attention the need of seeing that Mr. Bulganin is aware of that.