HC Deb 17 January 1992 vol 201 cc712-3W
Sir Marcus Fox

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the outcome of the Foreign Affairs Council held between 10 to 11 January.

Mr. Hurd

My hon. Friend, the Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, represented the United Kingdom at the Foreign Affairs Council on 10 January.

The Council agreed that the Community and member states should play a full part in the Washington conference on help to the former Soviet Union planned for 22–23 January. The Council had a preliminary discussion on the Community's relations with the newly-independent states of the former Soviet Union and invited the Commission to make specific proposals.

Ministers issued a statement welcoming the reconvening of the peace conference on Yugoslavia in the presence of all parties to the conflict. They noted the contribution by Montenegro towards creating the conditions necessary for the continuation of the conference. Ministers expressed their readiness to apply positive measures to Montenegro, similar to those agreed for Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzogovina and Macedonia.

Ministers also discussed my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister's proposal to hold a special meeting of the UN Security Council on 31 January. In a brief discussion of South Africa, Ministers confirmed their agreement that the EC ban on imports of iron, steel and krugerrands should be lifted and invited the Commission to submit a proposal to this effect to a future Council for formal adoption.

After the Council, Trade and Agriculture Ministers had an informal discussion on the GATT Uruguay round and reviewed the prospects for a successful conclusion of the round in the light of the draft agreement proposed by Mr. Dunkel, the GATT Director-General.

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