HC Deb 01 November 1968 vol 772 c3W
Mr. Binns

asked the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on his talks on Wednesday, 30th October, with the Prime Minister of the Irish Republic.

The Prime Minister

The Prime Minister of the Irish Republic and I took the opportunity of our meeting on Wednesday to discuss generally relations between the United Kingdom and the Irish Republic. Among the specific matters which we covered were trade relations between our two countries following the coming into force of the Anglo/Irish Free Trade Area Agreement and relations with the Common Market.

Mr. Lynch referred during our meeting to the recent disturbances in Northern Ireland and outlined his Government's views on the underlying reasons for these. He said that, in his view, the basic problem was Partition.

I pointed out to Mr. Lynch that the internal affairs of that part of the United Kingdom fall within the jurisdiction of the Northern Ireland Parliament. I mentioned to him that I would be having discussions next week with the Prime Minister of Northern Ireland which would cover all the main factors underlying the recent disturbances in Londonderry and all other relevant questions.

I further drew his attention to the exchanges in the House that day about the pledge given by Mr. Attlee in 1948 and 1949, and to my confirmation of that pledge.