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Questions To Ministers (Foreign Parliaments)

Volume 389: debated on Wednesday 19 May 1943

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he can furnish a list of the countries, outside the British Empire, in the Parliaments of which the practice of the interrogation of Ministers by means of questions is in operation?

In present circumstances it would be impossible with the material at our disposal to draw up a list with any degree of accuracy, but if my hon. Friend desires, I can take steps to obtain up-to-date information as regards those countries with which His Majesty's Government now maintain diplomatic relations.

May I ask my right hon. Friend whether he knows of more than about two countries in the whole world that have our democratic practice?

No, Sir, I do not know that I do, but, of course, methods differ. There are interpolations of different kinds, not always like our Question time.

Is it not a fact that at Question time, in a few moments, we always give the Government a great deal of advice?

Is it not a fact that Question time is very good for the Ministers?