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Kuala Lumpur: speech by the Prime Minister, Mr John Gorton at state dinner given by Tunku Abdul Rahman

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Speech by the Prime Minister, Mr. John Gorton at State Dinner given by Tunku Abdul Rahman

12 JUNE 1968

Prime Minister, Mr. Holyoake, Your Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen:-The first thing that I must do, Prime Minister, is to express to you my thanks, very sincere thanks, for your having extended to my wife and I the invitation to visit your country. And to say that, during the course of that visit,

you have extended to me many kindnesses which I shall remember as long as I have breath.

You did this morning an honour to my country, through me, by allowing me to enter your House of Parliament, and by the things you said about my country, remarks which were seconded by the Leader of the Opposition in that House. The fact that I was the first Australian Prime Minister to enter your

House of Parliament, and be so treated is perhaps an indication of how much closer together we have been getting, and perhaps an indication of how much closer yet we may get in the future.

The ties between Malaysia and Australia, and particularly that part of Malaysia which I shall call Malaya, and Australia, go back a long while, but they were in the beginning quite tenuous. The people of my country knew little of the people of yours and I expect that the people of your country knew little of mine. But a little more than a quarter of a century ago; those ties began to mean

something rather more real when together, you and we, and New Zealand, Great Britain and other nations attempted to stem the tide of conquest then sweeping down the Malayan Peninsular. That, I think, gave to thousands of Australians a clearer knowledge of this country and of those who live in it. And, since that

time, the inter-flow of the thousands of visitors of which you spoke, the great enrichment of our own country by the students who have come in such large numbers from Malaya, the closer economic co-operation between Malaya and ourselves,

the requirements to use force in order to resist at first an emergency and tien a confrontation, have all strengthened those ties of which you spoke.

Prime Minister, they are not now just ties between Prime Ministers; now, are they ties between governments or the policies of governments. I believe that they are now ties between the peoples of my country and of yours and, I think, that they will grow still more in strength as the years go by. ' I don't know, Sir, what the future holds, for none of us have a crystal ball. •jade

have for some time been engaged in joint attempts to safeguard the stability, the security and the progress of this area but now a change has come and soma of those who are engaged in these attempts may or may not be engaged in them in the future, or at least not in the same way. And this, of course, has been the theme of the initial Five Power talks just concluded.

But I would hope, air, one %ould not put one's trust for security in such things as the =malls to which you referred which the Romans built - 3 hen they quitted Britain because, if I remember subsequent events correctly, they were of no use whatever in preventing the Scots from completely subjugating Britain

and indeed I think New Zealand. But one doesn't of course put one's trust in such things: rather does one put it in that common purpose which you have expressed - a common purpose to seek by such means as each of us are able to spare, the security of an area which is necessary if the peoples of that area

are to progress and get a better standard of living. Rather does one put one's



trust in a common outlook recognising that security, and progress, are best secured by those kind of democratic processes, which you put into practice here and we put into practice in Australia. These are the ties that bind, these are the objectives in common.

And until that time comes when the motto of the United Nations is translated into - that motto being "They shall beat their swords into ploughshares"-until that time comes, and it has not come yet, then there will need to be co-operation for security, and,, under that shield, co-operation for progress. And because I think, as I said ., that the -people of my country are interested in the people of yours, and of neighbouring countries, I have high hopes that both our nations will be able to progress, behind the shield of security, to a future of even greater security, because the future rests on the will of the peoples and the standards of living which we will be able to achieve for them.

Ladies and gentlemen, would you joir me in a toast to the Prime Minister of Mal ay sia.