HC Deb 08 July 1968 vol 768 cc13-4
9. Sir G. Nabarro

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what further discussions he has had, and with what results, with representatives of all foreign non-Commonwealth countries trading in arms, in oil, in manufactures, and in other merchandise with Rhodesia, thus defeating United Nations' mandatory sanctions; and whether he will make a statement.

Mr. Goronwy Roberts

I have nothing to add to the reply which my right hon. Friend the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Wandsworth, Central (Dr. David Kerr) on 20th May.—[Vol. 765, c. 3–5.]

Sir G. Nabarro

Is the Foreign Office prepared to allow this matter to go by default? Is the Minister aware that the Rhodesian market, today lost to Britain, is now flooded with Japanese, West German, French and Italian motor cars and manufactured goods to our detriment? Why is he handing over this valuable trade to our foreign competitors?

Mr. Roberts

The recent resolution on comprehensive mandatory sanctions will have two effects: to improve the operation of sanctions against the illegal régime and also to correct the disbalance of trade, which the hon. Member has so eloquently described.

13. Mr. Biggs-Davison

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will move to refer to the International Court of Justice the question of the legality of mandatory United Nations sanctions against Rhodesia.

Mr. Goronwy Roberts

No, Sir.

Mr. Biggs-Davison

Does the right hon. Gentleman think that Mr. Dean Acheson is a bad international lawyer? Has he taken account of the views of him and of other very distinguished legal luminaries that this whole matter is lawless? Are the Government afraid to submit it to an international tribunal?

Mr. Roberts

We are, of course, aware of Mr. Acheson's opinion, and, much as we may respect him, nothing he has said has given us, or any other member of the Security Council which agrees with us, cause to reconsider our opinion. The hon. Member will recollect that, differently from the first resolution on sanctions in 1966, this was one which was voted for by every member of the Security Council. None of them had any doubt about the legality of their action.

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