HC Deb 07 November 1966 vol 735 cc203-4W
51. Mr. Zilliacus

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs why British military cover was given to the West German flotilla which on 18th October broke through the East German boat barrier on the Lenzen-Doemitz sector of the Elbe, in an attempt to settle by direct action a dispute about where the demarcation line runs in that area between East and West Germany.

Mr. George Thomson

The incident referred to arose out of interference by East German vessels with the movements of a Federal German survey vessel carrying out, in accordance with established practice, routine survey work preparatory to regular dredging required to keep the river navigable. A British military detach- ment was present in order to provide any necessary protection.