HC Deb 11 April 1983 vol 40 cc320-1W
Mr. Clinton Davis

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will publish in the Official Report his reply to a message submitted on 16 February by the executive committee of the Council of Churches in Namibia to each member of the western Five contact group concerning the current position in Namibia.

Mr. Onslow

[pursuant to the reply, 23 February 1983, c. 459]: The following is the information: Dear Chairman, Thank you for your open letter addressed to governments of the Western Five involved in the negotiations on Namibia. We have taken careful note of your representations. We share the concern of the Churches in Namibia for an early internationally-recognised settlement in Namibia, and for independence for its people. We much regret the delay in achieving implementation of the UN Plan endorsed by Security Council Resolution 435. But we remain convinced that this is the best basis for a settlement, and that the only way of achieving it is the path of negotiation. For this reason we are continuing our efforts, with our partners in the Five, to reach a negotiated solution. Your letter refers to the question of the withdrawal of Cuban troops from Angola. Discussions on this question, and on wider issues of regional security, are continuing between the Governments of the United States, Angola and South Africa. We consider that a successful outcome to these negotiations should open the way to a Namibia settlement and could also contribute more widely to the stability of the region. We take encouragement from the fact that negotiations are still continuing between the parties directly concerned, with whom we keep closely in touch. Yours sincerely, Cranley Onslow

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