HC Deb 15 February 1968 vol 758 cc1568-9
22. Mr. Judd

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations he has received about the admission of North Vietnamese students to the United Kingdom; and what reply he has sent.

Mr. Ennals

My right hon. Friend has received a request from the Imperial College Political Societies Council to agree to the admission of a Vietnamese spokesman to take part in a "teach-in" at Imperial College. This was discussed with the sponsors yesterday, and I will let them have a reply soon.

Mr. Judd

Would not my hon. Friend agree that recent lamentable developments in Vietnam have illustrated the need for growing exchanges of this sort? Can he give us an assurance that bona fide applications of this sort will be treated favourably in the future?

Mr. Ennals

I assured the House on 6th December that applications for visas by Vietnamese would be considered on their merits in the light of the relevant circumstances, and this will apply to this case and any other applications.

Rear-Admiral Morgan Giles

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. The Under-Secretary twice said "Vietnamese". Does he mean "North Vietnamese ", because there is a big difference?

Mr. Goodhart

Will the Under-Secretary remember that North Vietnam itself allows hardly any British citizens to visit that country and has refused all applications by Members on this side of the House?

Mr. Ennals

Further to that point of order. I was, of course, referring to applications from North Vietnamese.