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Atomic Energy (Discussions With United States And Canada)

Volume 415: debated on Tuesday 30 October 1945

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:I wish to ask the Prime Minister a further Question of which I have given him Private Notice. This is on quite a different topic which should give no cause for heat of any kind, except the most intense heat of which the universe is capable. I wish to ask the Prime Minister whether he has any statement to make regarding his discussions with the President of the United States on the problems arising from the discovery of atomic energy?

Yes, Sir. I am visiting President Truman shortly in Washington in order to discuss with him and the Prime Minister of Canada the problems to which the discovery of atomic energy has given rise. I have invited the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Scottish Universities (Sir J. Anderson), who is Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Atomic Energy, to accompany me in an advisory capacity, and he has been good enough to accept.

I am sure the House will wish the Prime Minister all possible success in his mission. I hope it will take place under those easy and informal conditions which have characterised other relationships between the head of the British Government and the President of the United States, and I trust it will not be limited to any particular topic and that conversation will range freely over everything that can conduce to the closer amity, intimacy and understanding between the two great English-speaking countries.

May I ask my right hon. Friend whether, at an early stage, Russia will be invited to these discussions?

:Will the Prime Minister endeavour to make a full statement on this important subject as soon as he returns and give the House an opportunity for a Debate?

I hope there may be a discussion in due course, but at the present moment I think we had better have conversations first.

I hope the Prime Minister will not prejudge the question of a Debate on foreign affairs before he goes. Hithertowe have not pressed the matter, but I think it may be necessary for us to ask him to consider the matter before he leaves this country, as various views should be set forth, so that they will be published to the world. Naturally, the House will exercise the utmost discretion.

:Is it not time, now that my right hon. Friend is going to have conversations with the President of the United States, to call in Russia at the same time?