HC Deb 29 January 1962 vol 652 cc684-5
7. Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Lord Privy Seal what agreement has been concluded with the Government of the German Federal Republic concerning the use of British forces in Western Germany against internal subversion.

Mr. Heath

None, Sir.

Mr. Zilliacus

In that case, why did the right hon. Gentleman tell the House on 18th October that the presence of Western troops in Western Germany was a very important guarantee against internal subversion? Is it the Government's policy in N.A.T.O., as it admittedly is in CENTO and S.E.A.T.O., to use British troops to put down popular risings, with or without the assent of the Government concerned, in the name of defence against internal subversion? Is that the Government's idea of defence?

Mr. Heath

As I pointed out in a rather lengthy letter which I sent to the hon. Gentleman on 15th January when I saw his Question on the Order Paper and deduced what might be his thinking in this matter, in that debate, when I referred to this matter, I was referring to West Berlin and not West Germany. If the hon. Member looks at the context in which that remark was made—the hon. Member for Pembroke (Mr. Donnelly) was speaking at the time—he will see that I was obviously referring to West Berlin. However, I am very glad that he has given me the opportunity of saying so publicly.

Mr. Warbey

Why is there this differentiation between West Berlin and West Germany?

Mr. Heath

Because we have responsibilities as one of the Powers in Berlin.