HC Deb 14 March 1963 vol 673 cc1526-7
Q5. Mr. Healey

asked the Prime Minister what correspondence he has had with the Prime Ministers of Malaya and Australia concerning the military protection of the proposed Malaysian Federation.

The Prime Minister

So far as British assistance for Malaysia's external defence is concerned, I would refer the hon. Member to the joint statement of 22nd November, 1961, in which the Prime Minister of Malaya and I agreed that the existing defence agreement between Britain and Malaya should be extended to cover all the territories of Malaysia. The Australian Government were kept fully informed.

Mr. Healey

In view of the confusion caused by the Tunku's unfortunate statement on this matter this week, can the Prime Minister assure the House that he will not make any new commitments for the defence of the proposed Malaysian Federation without concerting policy with the Australian Government, who are directly concerned in the matter, and that he will renew his efforts to reach an understanding on the future of Malaysia with the other major Powers in the area, particularly Indonesia and the Philippines?

The Prime Minister

In regard to the first part of that question, of course we are in close consultation with the Australian Government. The answer to the second part is "Yes".