HC Deb 09 May 1960 vol 623 cc28-9
39. Mr. Brockway

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what recent consideration has been given to the situation in Southern Korea by the United Nations delegation on the military Armistice Commission.

Mr. Ormsby Gore

I would refer the hon. Gentleman to the reply given to a Question by the hon. Member for Barking (Mr. Driberg) on 2nd May.

Mr. Brockway

I have read that reply, but is the right hon. Gentleman unable to indicate any means by which his Government and this Parliament may express their feeling of concern about conditions in South Korea today, where only last weekend a conference of democratic parties, attended by the ex-Chief Justice and the ex-Minister for Social Affairs, including the Democratic Socialist Party, was suppressed by the régime? Is that the kind of democracy for which we fought in Korea?

Mr. Ormsby Gore

The hon. Gentleman asked me whether he had the opportunity to express his views on the situation in South Korea. Of course, he has ample opportunity to express his views on the subject. What he asks me in the Question is related to reports of the Military Armistice Commission. As my right hon. Friend said on 2nd May, we have received no reports from this body— indeed, no such report was expected, since the Commission is not authorised to concern itself with political developments.

Mr. S. Silverman

Does not the right hon. Gentleman recall that this country and other countries in the West involved themselves in very heavy sacrifices of money, material and men, for the purely political consideration of maintaining democracy in South Korea? If it is really true that no one outside South Korea is now concerned with democracy in South Korea, why did we risk involving the world in a third world war ten years ago for that very purpose?

Mr. Ormsby Gore

As I understood at the time, the real purpose of our going to the help of South Korea was to resist aggression by North Korea on South Korea.