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Western Defence Contributions

Volume 497: debated on Wednesday 5 March 1952

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30.

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs the policy of Her Majesty's Government as to the amount of naval and air contributions to Western defence to be allowed to Germany.

The policy of Her Majesty's Government is that, subject to certain safeguards, a German contribution to Western defence should be made through the European Defence Community on a comparable basis to the defence contributions of other members of the European Defence Community and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. The size of the forces to be contributed to the European Defence Community is still under discussion.

Could the Minister explain exactly what that means? Are we to understand that Her Majesty's Government are committed to a German military contribution to Western defence? Could he assure us that the Government are not committed to the establishment of a new Luftwaffe or anything in the nature of an embryo German Navy?

As to a German Luftwaffe, there will be no German national force under the proposed arrangements.