Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Bonn Declaration.

Wednesday, 14 February 1962

Dáil Eireann Debate
Vol. 193 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 86 Next Page Last Page

25.

Mr. D. Costello: Information on Declan Costello  Zoom on Declan Costello  asked the Taoiseach if he will publish for the benefit [15] of Members and the public the full text of the Bonn Declaration of 18th July, 1961.

The Taoiseach: Information on Seán F. Lemass  Zoom on Seán F. Lemass  With your permission, Sir, I propose to circulate in the Official Report the text of the Bonn statement of the 18th July, 1961, which is generally referred to as “the Bonn Declaration”.

I might add that the July-August, 1961, issue of the Bulletin of the European Economic Community, which is available in the Library, incorporates the text of the statement.

The statement is as follows:—

The heads of State or Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg as well as the Prime Minister and the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, desirous of affirming the spiritual values and political traditions which form their common heritage, united in the awareness of the great tasks which Europe is called upon to fulfil within the community of free peoples in order to safeguard liberty and peace in the world, anxious to strengthen the political, economic, social and cultural ties which exist between their peoples, especially in the framework of the European Communities, and to advance towards the union of Europe;

Convinced that only a united Europe, allied to the United States of America and to other free peoples, is in a position to face the dangers which menace the existence of Europe and of the whole free world, and that it is important to unite the energies, capabilities, and resources of all those for whom liberty is an inalienable possession; resolved to develop their political co-operation with a view to the union of Europe and to continue at the same time the work already undertaken in the European Communities;

Wishing for the accession to the European Communities of other European States ready to assume in all [16] spheres the same responsibilities and the same obligations, have decided:

1. To give shape to the will for political union already implicit in the Treaties establishing the European Communities, and for this purpose to organise their co-operation, to provide for its development and to secure for it the regularity which will progressively create the conditions for a common policy and will ultimately make it possible to embody in institutions the work that has been begun;

2. To hold at regular intervals meetings whose aim will be to compare their views, to concert their policies and to reach common positions in order to further the political union of Europe, thereby strengthening the Atlantic alliance. The necessary practical measures will be taken to prepare these meetings. In addition, the continuation of active co-operation among the Foreign Ministers will contribute to the continuity of the action undertaken in common. The co-operation of the Six must go beyond the strictly political field, and will in particular be extended to the sphere of education, of culture, and of research, where it will be ensured by periodical meetings of the Ministers concerned;

3. To instruct their Committee to submit to them proposals on the means which will as soon as possible enable a statutory character to be given to the union of their peoples.

The heads of State or Government are convinced that by thus organising their co-operation they will further the application of the Rome and Paris Treaties. They also believe that their co-operation will facilitate any reforms which might seem opportune in the interests of the greater efficiency of the Communities.

To this end they have decided:

(a) To have a study made of the various points of the Resolution of the European Parliament of 29 June, 1961, on the subject of political co-operation among the Member States of the European Communities.

[17] (b) To associate public opinion more closely with the efforts already undertaken, by inciting the European Parliament to extend the range of its debates to new fields, with the co-operation of the Governments.

Declaration on Cultural Co-operation.

The following Declaration on Cultural Co-operation among the Six was adopted in Bonn:

“The Conference of heads of State or Government, meeting in Bonn on 18 July, 1961, has taken note of the report drawn up by the Study Committee on the subject of co-operation in the field of higher education and research.

It has envisaged the establishment of a Council composed of the Ministers of National Education or the Ministers whose responsibilities include international cultural relations, assisted by a committee of experts, as well as the negotiation of one or several conventions on the following subjects:

(a) Co-operation and exchanges between universities of the Member Countries of the European Communities;

(b) The “European status” (“vocation européenne”) which could be accorded to university or research institutes in the various countries;

(c) The establishment by Italy of a European University in Florence, to the intellectual life and financing of which the six Governments will contribute;

(d) The possible establishment of other European institutes devoted to university teaching or to scientific research.

The Study Committee has been instructed to work out as quickly as possible drafts for the conventions and acts which are to embody this plan for cultural co-operation.”

Mr. Dillon: Information on James Matthew Dillon  Zoom on James Matthew Dillon  Purely on a procedural point, I note the Taoiseach said he [18] proposes to circulate the text of the Bonn statement in the Official Report. I wonder is that a desirable procedure? Would it not be better to circulate it separately? We do not want to reach the stage in Dáil Éireann, a stage which has been reached in certain other deliberative assemblies, in which any of us desiring to have something recorded in the records of the Dáil can, by leave of the Chair, get it inserted. We have never done that heretofore so far as I know. Might I suggest to the Taoiseach it might be a better procedure simply to send a copy to each individual Deputy?

The Taoiseach: Information on Seán F. Lemass  Zoom on Seán F. Lemass  I do not think I am really establishing a precedent. The Deputy asked for the text of the statement. I am proposing to circulate it with the Official Report. It is not a very long statement, and it is desirable that all Deputies should read it.

Mr. McGilligan: Information on Patrick McGilligan  Zoom on Patrick McGilligan  The Taoiseach had already accepted the Bonn Declaration in his speech at Brussels. Is that not so?

Mr. T.F. O'Higgins: Information on Michael Joseph O'Higgins  Zoom on Michael Joseph O'Higgins  Before any of us saw the Declaration.

The Taoiseach: Information on Seán F. Lemass  Zoom on Seán F. Lemass  It is true that our application for membership of the EEC rests on our acceptance of the Bonn Declaration.

Mr. McGilligan: Information on Patrick McGilligan  Zoom on Patrick McGilligan  Did not the Taoiseach state specifically he accepted the conception of the Bonn Declaration?

The Taoiseach: Information on Seán F. Lemass  Zoom on Seán F. Lemass  Yes.

Mr. Sweetman: Information on Gerard Sweetman  Zoom on Gerard Sweetman  And did not the Taoiseach say exactly the reverse on the Adjournment Debate last July?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Patrick Hogan  Zoom on Patrick Hogan  I do not think we can relevantly discuss all this now.

The Taoiseach: Information on Seán F. Lemass  Zoom on Seán F. Lemass  I did not. Had the Declaration been made at the time?

Mr. Sweetman: Information on Gerard Sweetman  Zoom on Gerard Sweetman  It had.

Mr. T.F. O'Higgins: Information on Michael Joseph O'Higgins  Zoom on Michael Joseph O'Higgins  The Taoiseach has stated he accepts the principles of the Bonn Declaration and [19] he is now going to ensure that this House will know what they are.

The Taoiseach: Information on Seán F. Lemass  Zoom on Seán F. Lemass  The Declaration was, of course, published in the newspapers at the time and it has been referred to frequently since. A copy has been available in the library. It is quite clear that membership of EEC is open only to states which accept the Bonn Declaration.

Mr. T. Lynch: Information on Thaddeus Lynch  Zoom on Thaddeus Lynch  But it might be like the speech of the Minister for Land. Are we to accept everything in the newspapers then?


Last Updated: 15/09/2010 20:41:00 First Page Previous Page Page of 86 Next Page Last Page