HC Deb 02 August 1965 vol 717 cc196-8W
33. Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if, in pursuance of his attempts to find a basis for a peace settlement in Vietnam, he will seek clarification of President Johnson's official declarations on 25th March and 7th April about the United States policy towards a settlement.

Mr. M. Stewart

I see no reason to do this in view of President Johnson's many subsequent statements making clear the United States position.

43. Mr. Woodhouse

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what information he has received leading him to revise his assessment of the conditions that require to be fulfilled as a preliminary to negotiations for a peaceful settlement in Vietnam.

Mr. M. Stewart

My view remains that negotiations should take place as soon as possible and I see no necessity for these to be delayed by prior conditions.

51. Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs to what extent Her Majesty's Government are still bound by the terms of the 1954 Geneva Agreements and Declaration concerning Vietnam; and what specific steps they are taking to secure observance of the provisions which stipulate that Vietnam is one country, that the military demarcation line must not in any circumstances be treated as a political or territorial boundary, and that the people of Vietnam must be free to reunite their divided country without outside pressure or interference, including the presence of foreign forces and bases.

Mr. M. Stewart

Her Majesty's Government associated themselves with the Final Declaration of the Geneva Conference of 1954 and have always honoured the specific undertakings contained in Articles 12 and 13 of that Declaration. The steps taken by the Government of the day to secure observance of the particular provisions mentioned by my hon. Friend are set out in a White Paper (Cmd. 9763) published in 1956. Any further steps must depend on the willingness of China, North Vietnam and the Soviet Union to honour their undertakings under Article 13 and enter into negotiations to ensure that the Agreement on the Cessation of Hostilities in Vietnam is respected.

53. Mr. Emrys Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what was the total expenditure incurred by Her Majesty's Government in South Vietnam in July; and for what purposes.

Mr. M. Stewart

It is not yet possible to give the total expenditure in South Vietnam for July. My hon. Friend may, however, like to know that in May, which is the most recent month for which a total can be estimated, the expenditure was in the region of £30,000. This total covers the running expenses and salaries and allowances of staff at H.M. Embassy in Saigon, the British Advisory Mission and the British Council. It does not include expenditure incurred by the British Council outside Vietnam in connection with students, visitors or the buying of books, nor does it cover the expenses by the Ministry of Overseas Development which vary very much from month to month.

55. Mr. A. Henderson

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what further discussions he has had with his co-chairman, the Soviet Foreign Minister, with a view to convening the Geneva Conference to secure a political settlement of the problems of Vietnam and whether he will make a statement.

Mr. M. Stewart

I lose no opportunity of reminding the Soviet Government of my readiness to join in convening a conference but their refusal to consider this course has so far remained unaltered.