§ Mr. Tam Dalyell (West Lothian)
I beg to ask leave to move the Adjournment of the House, under Standing Order No. 9, for the purpose of discussing a specific and important matter that should have urgent consideration, namely,the operations by the SAS on the South American mainland".I gave you notice before 12 noon today, Mr. Speaker, of the subject that I have mentioned, which I hoped to be able to withdraw because I thought that it would be cleared up in defence questions or Prime Minister's questions. In applying for an Adjournment debate under Standing Order No. 9, I believe that it would not be right to argue the case one way or the other for those operations. Many of us understand that in view of Exocet and other subjects discussed at Question Time.
Whatever one's view, surely the matter must be cleared up one way or the other as a matter of importance and urgency. It is an important matter for this country because the impression is put abroad in the face of lack of contradiction—witness the front page of today's Daily Mail—that those operations have taken place. Some of us would argue, whatever our views on the general issue hitherto, that any operation on the mainland of the South American continent raises the matter to an entirely different order of importance and urgency. I do not want to abuse the Standing Order No. 9 procedure, but through you, Mr. Speaker, I must state that this is an important subject. Perhaps the Leader of the House will volunteer a short statement. The matter was not cleared up by the Minister of State when he answered question No. 17.
§ Mr. Speaker
The hon. Member for West Lothian (Mr. Dalyell) gave me notice before 12 noon today that he would seek leave to move the Adjournment of the House for the purpose of discussing a specific and important matter that he thinks should have urgent consideration, namely,the operations by the SAS on the South American mainland".I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for confining himself to the question of urgency and importance rather than seeking to make the speech that he would have made had his application been granted. I listened with anxiety to the hon. Gentleman, but I must rule that his submission does not fall within the provisions of the Standing Order and, therefore, I cannot submit his application to the House.