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Her Majesty's Representative

Volume 529: debated on Monday 5 July 1954

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs why Her Majesty has been represented in Guatemala by a Chargé d'Affaires during the present emergency; and what steps he has taken to secure representation by a fully-accredited Minister.

Mr. W. H. Gallienne, who had been Minister at Guatemala City since 1947, left on 17th March to take up his appointment as Ambassador to Cuba. His successor, Mr. R. H. S. Allen, left the United Kingdom on 29th May, but owing to the disruption of communications, he was not able to reach his post until 2nd July.

Does not that answer, and the right hon. and learned Gentleman's answer to the previous Question, show that Her Majesty's Government were grievously lacking in information about all the affairs that took place in Guatemala at this time? Will not the right hon. and learned Gentleman undertake to publish as a White Paper the full information that he obtained either from the Guatemalan Government or from such representatives as he may have had in Guatemala during that period?

I should like to repudiate straight away any suggestion that Her Majesty's Government were not appropriately represented during this period. Her Majesty's Chargé d'Affaires was a very experienced and able officer, and I am perfectly certain that he represented us in the best possible manner.

There are later Questions with regard to that matter. There was a public communication, I think in January of this year, by the Guatemalan Government.

Does not my right hon. and learned Friend think it is a good thing that there should be an interval when a new Minister is appointed so that more junior members of the Diplomatic Service may have an opportunity to prove their worth?