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Tuesday, 20 April 1971


Senator MURPHY - My question is directed to the Leader of the Government in the Senate and the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs.


Senator Sir KENNETH ANDERSON - 1 no longer represent the Minister for Foreign Affairs.


Senator MURPHY - ThenI direct my question to either or both Ministers.I hope that both Ministers will wish to answer it. I ask: Could the Leader of the Government in the Senate or the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs explain whether the Australian Government still asserts internationally that the lawful government of Mainland China is still the Government of the Republic of China, which is situated on Taiwan? Will the Government inform the Senate how long this nonsense is going to continue of Australia pretending that the lawful government of Mainland China is not the Government of the People's Republic of China, particularly as it has been recognised as such by even Conservative governments in Britain for over 20 years?


Senator Sir KENNETH ANDERSON - I think that even the Leader of the Opposition will recognise thathehas posed as a question a matter which would justify quite a lengthy debate ranging over a whole number of issues. I think it is recognised as a fact that the Taiwan Government, as he chose to call it,has a seat in the United Nations and that this is basic in terms of recognition.


Senator Cavanagh - A seat representing China!


Senator Sir KENNETH ANDERSON - That is right. It also has a seat in the Security Council. 1 do not want to be critical of the Leader of the Opposition, but it would seem to me that he is posing his question in a political sense. The fact is that in the world in which we live at present the Taiwan Government has recognition in the United Nations. It is true that the United Nations will meet in plenary session towards the end of the year and I have no doubt that this matter will be again raised then. The Leader of the Opposition has asked me to express the Government's policy on this matter. I decline to do so. All 1 shall do is remind him of the actual situation at present.







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