HC Deb 21 February 1966 vol 725 cc29-31
57. Mr. Blaker

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what further initiative Her Majesty's Government pro- pose to take in order to resolve the Vietnam dispute.

Mr. M. Stewart

We shall continue our efforts to promote a negotiated settlement in Vietnam, but there is no new initiative for me to report to the House at present.

Mr. Blaker

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that President Nkrumah of Ghana is at present on his way to Hanoi to pay a visit there? Is he doing this as a representative of the Commonwealth Peace Mission or not?

Mr. Stewart

No, Sir.

Mr. Philip Noel-Baker

Will my right hon. Friend do his utmost to clarify the position of Her Majesty's Government and of the United States Government about the place which the N.L.F. is to have in the peace conference and its share in the elections which will follow? Is my right hon. Friend aware that the United States spokesmen say something different every day?

Mr. Stewart

I expressed a clear view about this in the foreign affairs debate in the House a little while ago.

Mr. Zilliacus

Would my right hon. Friend make the position still clearer and say unequivocally whether Her Majesty's Government support the N.L.F. being a party to the negotiations, remembering that by doing so we would increase the chances of the Prime Minister reaching some conclusion in Moscow instead of condemning him to a sleeveless errand?

Mr. Stewart

We have no evidence to show that, even if that were said, Hanoi would be prepared to negotiate. I repeat that if it were clearly represented from Hanoi that if this condition were fulfilled negotiations could take place, then I believe that it would be possible to make progress. However, until that happens this is a hypothetical question and not a real one.

Mr. Richard

Would my right hon. Friend clarify the attitude of Her Majesty's Government towards the speech made yesterday by Senator Robert Kennedy in the United States?

Mr. Stewart

That is another question.

Mr. Soames

Is the right hon. Gentleman suggesting that circumstances could arise In which he would favour representatives of the National Liberation Front being the only representatives representing South Vietnam?

Mr. Stewart

I said nothing of the kind.

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