§ LORD BROCKWAY
My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question which stands in my name on the Order Paper.
§ The Question was as follows:
§ To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will report on the progress of discussions for the convening of a Conference on European Security and Co-operation.
My Lords, as I indicated to the noble Lord on a previous occasion, Her Majesty's Government are in contact with the Finnish Government about their offer to provide facilities for the preparation of this Conference. We are also discussing with our Allies how the Conference might best improve security and strengthen cooperation in Europe. We look forward to beginning East/ West preparatory talks as soon as possible after the completion of the Berlin Agreement.
§ LORD BROCKWAY
My Lords, I thank the Minister for that reply. In 1130 view of the very critical world situation—Vietnam, the German Treaties, the Moscow Summit—described to-day by the Pope as a day of trepidation for the future of the world, may I ask whether Her Majesty's Government can take a lead in a bold declaration of the necessity for this Conference on European Security and, perhaps more important, cooperation, which could be a breakthrough for peace not only in Europe but in the world?
My Lords, Her Majesty's Government are keen to see this Conference come about, but the noble Lord will be aware that we have always been of the view, as have our allies, that this should come about after the conclusion of the Berlin Agreement. The noble Lord will know that the second stage of this Agreement was concluded at the end of last year and we, together with our American and French allies, have been prepared to sign the final quadripartite protocol, but the Russians have not been prepared to do this until they have seen the ratification of Germany's two Eastern Treaties.