Extract from minutes of the 410th meeting of the WEU Council held at ministerial level on 11 January 1971 in Luxembourg (London, 25 March 1971)

At the 410th meeting of the Council of Western European Union (WEU), held at ministerial level on 11 January 1971 in Luxembourg, the delegations discuss the Soviet presence in the Mediterranean. Geoffrey Rippon, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, emphasises that the British Government is very concerned by the growing presence of Soviet naval forces in the Mediterranean. It considers the situation to be serious and believes that it would be worthwhile for the Member States of the Council to continue to hold consultations on this matter. However, the French State Secretary in the Foreign Ministry, Jean de Lipkowski, does not think that the Soviet presence in North Africa represents as much of a threat to Western positions as generally believed, despite the fact that Algeria serves as an anchor point for the Soviet penetration policy. France does not see the Soviet Union in North Africa as an adversary but rather as a competitor seeking to impose its experts, products and techniques.

Source and copyright

Source: Conseil de l'Union de l'Europe occidentale. Extrait du compte rendu de la 410e réunion du Conseil tenue au niveau ministériel le 11 janvier 1971 à Luxembourg. CR (71) 1. Exemplaire No. 8. 25.03.1971. pp. [s.p]; 85-90.

Ministère des Affaires étrangères. Centre des Archives diplomatiques de Nantes. Archives rapatriées de l'ambassade de France à Londres. Série «Union de l'Europe occidentale (UEO)». 1953-1992 (2002). 378PO/UEO/1-389. Numéro 34. Cote UEO.1.2.Luxembourg. Réunion ministérielle 11 janvier 1971. 1970-1974.

Copyright: (c) Ministère des Affaires étrangères de la République Française
Avec l'autorisation du ministère des Affaires Etrangères

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