HC Deb 02 March 1955 vol 537 cc283-4W
103 and 104. Mr. Beswick

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Air (1) if he is satisfied that the "D" notice procedure of the Press Committee is now working satisfactorily; and if he will make a statement:

(2) how comprehensive, among newspapers and magazines, the agreement is to abide by the "D" notice procedure of the Press Committee; what sanctions exist if a publication refuses to give an undertaking; and to what extent the agreement extends to the publishers of books.

Mr. Ward

Under the "D" notice procedure editors of newspapers and periodicals in this country voluntarily accept guidance in security matters. Publishers of books are encouraged to seek guidance about the subjects with which they are likely to be concerned. In itself the procedure does not provide for sanctions. It is not easy to reconcile the need for security with the satisfaction of public interest in Service matters but, in general, the arrangements work very well. I should like to pay tribute to the high sense of responsibility that editorial staffs show in these matters.