The situation in Rhodesia is deteriorating. The number of people who have lost their lives since the internal settlement was signed increases monthly, as does the number of people emigrating. There has been an escalation of the fighting and martial law now covers 90 per cent, of the country.
Order. In view of the Foreign Secretary's reply, I wonder whether it would help hon. Members if I said that instead of calling them now I shall call them when the statement has been made by the Prime Minister. That might make greater sense. I should point out that I shall not call later those hon. Members whom I call now.
Has my right hon. Friend seen a report in the South African Financial Mail to the effect that Britain is said to have been prepared to guarantee oil supplies to South Africa in return for South Africa's co-operation in dealing with Rhodesia? Bearing in mind my right hon. Friend's oft-repeated statement that in our dealings with South Africa there would be no trade-off agreements, may I ask him emphatically to deny that report?
There is no question of Britain supplying oil to South Africa. As for a trade-off, I have always believed that the issues of Namibia, Rhodesia and South Africa will have to be dealt with in different compartments. There is a certain linkage—it would be foolish to deny that—but I do not believe that we should trade off one against the other.