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Moscow Radio Broadcasts

Volume 640: debated on Thursday 11 May 1961

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he is aware of the subversive and untrue statements which have been broadcast recently by Moscow radio about conditions in Northern Rhodesia in connection with the constitutional talks; and what steps are being taken to counteract this propaganda.

Yes, Sir. The best positive answer to these grossly distorted statements is the effective dissemination of the true facts about conditions in Northern Rhodesia, and the constitutional talks and Her Majesty's Government's part in them. This has been and is being done by the B.B.C., the United Kingdom Information Services and local information services in United Kingdom territories.

While thanking my hon. Friend for that reply and apologising for not being present to ask Question No. 30, may I ask if my hon. Friend will say what steps have been taken to increase the information services in Rhodesia to dispel some of this propaganda?

In the current Budget, expenditure on information services will rise from£97,000 to£157,000.

Will the hon. Gentleman agree that the most effective way to meet this kind of distorted propaganda is to ensure the speediest possible constitutional progress towards self-government in Northern Rhodesia?