§ Mr. Marten
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a policy declaration that the powers of a directly elected Parliament must remain the same as at present and that the Government will not negotiate to extend them; and if he will invite the other United Kingdom party leaders to join him in this declaration.
§ Dr. Owen
The Government's position has been made clear on a number of occasions. My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister expained it in detail during the debate on direct elections on 29th March 1976 and, in answer to a Question from my hon. Friend the Member for Newham, South (Mr. Spearing) on 14th July, he confirmed that any increase in the powers of the Assemby would require the approval of this House and of the eight other Parliaments.