HC Deb 17 February 1959 vol 600 cc196-8
48. Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Prime Minister to what extent, in discussions during his proposed visit to Moscow, he is prepared to reconsider his policy on united Germany being free to enter the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, on the maintenance of the Bagdad Pact, on armed intervention against alleged subversion in any country at the request of its Government, and on the negotiation of political settlements before accepting any substantial measure of international disarmament.

The Prime Minister

I made a full statement to the House on 5th February, and I do not think that any further amplification would be helpful.

Mr. Zilliacus

Is it not a fact that the Soviet position on these matters is very well known and, whereas the Soviet Government would reach agreement on the basis of the proposals for disengagement and for co-operation in the Middle East advocated by the Opposition, there is no hope of agreement unless the basic positions of the Government are modified? Is the Prime Minister prepared to use them as bargaining counters when he goes to Moscow?

The Prime Minister

The hon. Gentleman says that he speaks—I do not know on what authority—for the Soviet Government. I propose, if I am able to do so, to speak to the Soviet Government.

52. Mr. Lewis

asked the Prime Minister whether, during his forthcoming discussions with Mr. Khrushchev, he will seek an assurance that, in any proposed talks or agreement concerning Germany leading to an eventual peace treaty, such treaty will contain adequate clauses to secure the removal of any known Nazi judge or general from office, in either East or West Germany, in accordance with the Potsdam Agreement, and a joint commission to investigate the charges and allegations that there are now in office in West Germany 596 jurists who served in Hitler's Special Courts.

The Prime Minister

I cannot anticipate what matters may be raised at these discussions.

Mr. Lewis

Without asking the Prime Minister to anticipate, may we ask whether or not he agrees that it would be a good thing if these former Nazis, who are alleged to be in both East and West Germany, were removed from these State positions and quasi-State positions? Will the right hon. Gentleman bear that in mind if he has the opportunity of raising this question?

The Prime Minister

Yes, Sir. But that is not the point raised in the Question. The responsibility for judicial appointments in the Federal Republic is, of course, a matter for the German authorities. That has been the position since 1949, but Her Majesty's Government retain an interest in this matter and it is one about which I feel sure the Federal Government recognise their responsibilities.

55. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Prime Minister if he will specify the topics he intends to discuss with the Ministers of the Russian Government during his forthcoming visit to Russia.

The Prime Minister

I am not prepared to disclose in advance what particular topics will be raised by Her Majesty's Government during these talks.

Mr. Hughes

Is the Prime Minister aware—and, of course, he is—of the close inter-relation between culture, trade, industry and international relations? Will he, therefore, seek to encourage greater intercourse between Russia and the West in these matters?

The Prime Minister

I am aware, of course, of the importance of this question.

Mr. Woodburn

Is the Prime Minister responsible in any way for the suggestion that he will bring back £1,200 million worth of orders from Russia?

The Prime Minister

No, Sir. I think the right hon. Gentleman must have been reading the newspapers.