HC Deb 20 March 1968 vol 761 cc388-9
3 Mr. James Davidson

asked the Secretry of State for Defence what are the responsibilities to be fulfilled by the garrison in Hong Kong.

Mr. Healey

The responsibilities of British forces in Hong Kong are to assist if necessary in maintaining internal security in the Colony and in its external defence.

Mr. Davidson

Is it the opinion of the Secretary of State for Defence that the garrison force would be capable of defending the base against external attack or is it merely there for aid to the civil power?

Mr. Healey

We do not at the present time expect a massive attack, but I am not prepared to discuss our contingency plans in that event in the House.

Mr. A. Royle

Can the right hon. Gentleman give a firm assurance that the reinforcement of the Hong Kong garrison in case of serious internal difficulties has the highest priority in his Department?

Mr. Healey

Yes. I am very glad to do that.