HC Deb 29 June 1971 vol 820 cc91-2W
Mr. Carter-Jones

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what representation he has received from India regarding contributions towards the cumulative costs to India of looking after the refugees from East Pakistan; if he will give the cumulative contributions given by Great Britain and the United Nations, respectively, towards such costs; and if he will make a statement;

(2) what the interim report from the United Nations regarding the refugees from East Pakistan to India has suggested regarding the costs to India; what estimate this interim report has given of India's needs to sustain the refugees; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Wood

It is not possible to make a realistic estimate of the extent of the costs; the figure of $175 million (£73 million) contained in the United Nations Secretary-General's first appeal was based on a much lower number of refugees than are now in India. The Government of India made no direct formal appeal, but has made it clear that it would welcome assistance.

The total contributions given or promised by Britain, including those which were the subject of the statement by my right hon. Friend the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary on 23 rd June, are now over £8 million. The United Nations estimated that on 17th June the total international response from governments and other sources, both to the Secretary-General's appeal and directly to the India Government, was about $75 million (£31 million).

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