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Convention On Genocide

Volume 643: debated on Wednesday 5 July 1961

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asked the Lord Privy Seal whether Her Majesty's Government will now accede to the Convention on Genocide in view of the repeated anti-Semitic activities of Nazis and neo-Nazis.

I am not yet in a position to add to what I said in my speech in the House on 5th June.

Does the Minister of State realise that time is extremely important in this matter now? Twelve years have passed since the Convention was accepted, and we have, for our part, made no move at all. Is he aware that, throughout the world, moneys which were extracted from the unhappy victims of Nazism, the 6 million who died, brutally murdered and tortured, are being utilised by Nazis all over the world in order to carry on further anti-Semitic activities? The matter is extremely serious. Will he do something about it?

I sympathise with the hon. Gentleman's point of view, as I made plain in our earlier debate, but I do not think that the point he has just raised would be assisted by our adherence to the Convention. I remind him that there are special problems in relation to Article 7 of the Convention and the right of this country to give asylum in certain cases which must be given most careful consideration.

I think that this is a most unsatisfactory state of affairs. Although I have raised it before on the Adjournment, I beg to give notice that I must seek an early opportunity of pressing the Minister by raising the matter again on the Adjournment.