asked the Prime Minister if he will give an assurance that any country which leaves the Empire, thus becoming a foreign country, will not automatically have its defence shared by Great Britain, and that the Governments of the Commonwealth and Empire will be consulted before any decisions regarding the security of such foreign countries are made.
Any proposal to share defence responsibilities in a case of this kind must obviously be a matter for negotiation and treaty with the Govern- ment concerned. In the event of such a situation arising, the normal procedure as regards consultation with other countries of the Commonwealth would be followed.
Is there any Treaty as regards the defence of Eire, or is it regarded as part of the Empire?
I would like notice of that question.
Has the Prime Minister any reason to regard the original Question as other than purely hypothetical?