The Rt. Hon. Sir John Major KG CH

Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 1990-1997

1991Prime Minister (1990-1997)

PMQT Written Answers – 12 December 1991

Below is the text of the written answers relating to Prime Minister’s Question Time from 12th December 1991.



East Timor

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister what steps have been taken by Her Majesty’s Government to ensure the enforcement upon the Indonesian Government of resolutions 384 and 389 of the United Nations on the Indonesian invasion of East Timor.

The Prime Minister : Since 1982, the United Kingdom has supported the UN Secretary-General in his efforts to promote contacts between Indonesia and Portugal to reach a settlement satisfactory to both sides, as called for in a resolution of that year’s UN General Assembly.


Arms Control

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister if he will seek to initiate with President Bush an emergency meeting of the two remaining depository states of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty to discuss the status of commitments made to the treaty by the Government of the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, following the declaration of an independent commonwealth of slavic states by the leadership of the Ukrainian, Byelorussian and Russian republics on 8 December.

The Prime Minister : We have already had discussions with the United States and our other NATO allies about the Soviet Union’s commitments and obligation under all international treaties including NPT. I also discussed it with President Mitterrand at the European Council and NATO Foreign Ministers will discuss the matter on 19 December. We have made it clear to the republics that their readiness to honour such commitments will be a major factor in developing our relations with them.


Prime Minister’s Office (Report)

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister what plans he has to publish a report on the operations of the Prime Minister’s Office.

The Prime Minister : None.


Iraq (Petrochemical Programme)

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Prime Minister when Her Majesty’s Government first learned of the petrochemical-3 (PC-3) programme in Iraq ; and what steps were taken to establish the extent of involvement by United Kingdom companies or organisations in that PC-3 programme.

The Prime Minister : We first learned of the PC3 programme in Iraq at the time the UN inspections were starting.

We have asked the UN special commission and the IAEA to let us have details of any evidence of involvement by British companies in Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction programmes which may come to their attention. Any indication of wrongdoing will be urgently investigated. If strategic export controls have been breached, it will be a matter for the courts.



Mr. Harry Greenway : To ask the Prime Minister if he will list his official engagements for Thursday 12 December.

The Prime Minister : This morning I presided at a meeting of the Cabinet and had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others. In addition to my duties in the House, I shall be having further meetings later today.