United Nations (South Africa)

Oral Answers to Questions — Science – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 21st May 1963.

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Photo of Mrs Barbara Castle Mrs Barbara Castle , Blackburn 12:00 am, 21st May 1963

asked the Prime Minister whether, in view of the request to the President of the Security Council by the chairman of the United Nations Special Committee on the Policies of Apartheid in South Africa that the report of the committee should be discussed by the Security Council as soon as possible, he will consult President Kennedy with a view to this matter being raised jointly by the delegates of the United Kingdom and the United States at the special meeting of the Security Council now in session.

Photo of Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Harold Macmillan , Bromley

No, Sir; there is no special meeting of the Security Council now in session. The Council is empowered to meet at any time and will no doubt consider the interim report of the Special Committee as soon as members think this appropriate.

Photo of Mrs Barbara Castle Mrs Barbara Castle , Blackburn

Is the Prime Minister aware that the United Nations Special Committee pointed out that South Africa is now building up a military establishment far beyond its defence needs and has expressed grave anxiety and indignation at the continued provision of arms to South Africa by other Powers? Is he also aware that Chief Luthuli issued an appeal to the whole civilised world to stop supplying arms to South Africa, and that the International Commission of Jurists has described South Africa as copying some of the worst features of the Communist-Stalinist régime? In view of this, will he instruct the United Kingdom delegates, either at the Security Council or at the General Assembly, to raise this matter as one of urgency?

Photo of Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Harold Macmillan , Bromley

I think that the hon. Lady is under some misapprehension. The Security Council is not in session. It can, of course, meet if the president of the month calls it or if anybody applies for it. This report will come before the next meeting of the General Assembly and will, no doubt, be debated.

Photo of Mr Philip Noel-Baker Mr Philip Noel-Baker , Derby South

In the meantime, will the Prime Minister give his attention to the immensely important statement made by Chief Luthuli and reported in The Times this morning?

Photo of Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Harold Macmillan , Bromley

Yes, Sir. We will take that into consideration with all other relevant considerations.

Photo of Mr John Biggs-Davison Mr John Biggs-Davison , Chigwell

Should not the United Nations and all of us work for peaceful co-existence between the various African States irrespective of the colour of their Governments?

Photo of Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Harold Macmillan , Bromley

I think that the views of Her Majesty's Government and, indeed, of the whole country on the question of apartheid are known. The only question is, what are the best methods which in the long run will bring happiness and peace to these territories?