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Disarmament

Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 23rd January 1964.

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Photo of Mr Philip Noel-Baker Mr Philip Noel-Baker , Derby South 12:00 am, 23rd January 1964

asked the Prime Minister what proposals he has made to the President of the United States of America for reconciling the Soviet Draft Treaty of General and Complete Disarmament under Strict International Control with the United States Outline of Basic Provisions for a Treaty of General and Complete Disarmament in a Peaceful World.

Photo of Sir Alec Douglas-Home Sir Alec Douglas-Home , Kinross and West Perthshire

Any proposals I may make to President Johnson would be confidential. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary stated in the House on 20th January how we propose to proceed at the Geneva Disarmament Conference.

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

Does the Prime Minister still consider that the Russian and American draft treaties are the right basis for negotiation and that a treaty could be made by having the best out of both, as he said two years ago?

Photo of Sir Alec Douglas-Home Sir Alec Douglas-Home , Kinross and West Perthshire

That is what I said two years ago and what I still hope. The conference is now working to an agenda which, I understand, covers all the important points in the first stage of the United States and Soviet plans.

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

Will the Prime Minister give us a White Paper setting out President Lyndon Johnson's proposals regarding a freeze of strategic nuclear means of delivery and an explanation of Her Majesty's Government's views about that?

Photo of Sir Alec Douglas-Home Sir Alec Douglas-Home , Kinross and West Perthshire

I am always ready to explain Her Majesty's Government's views if a Question is put down on this. I shall have to consider the suggestion for a White Paper.

Photo of Mr William Warbey Mr William Warbey , Ashfield

Since President Johnson has sent a personal message to the Disarmament Committee making specific proposals in the direction of a disarmament treaty, will the Prime Minister do the same himself, or has he no ideas of his own?

Photo of Sir Alec Douglas-Home Sir Alec Douglas-Home , Kinross and West Perthshire

We work very closely with the Americans on these matters and we shall be working with them in Geneva, because we support the American disarmament plan, and have done all along. This aspect of it is a matter which has to be discussed round the table with the Russians and the other people at the disarmament conference.