fifty years ago May 21, 1969 Archives

From the Archives (May 21, 1969): U.K.’s vital role in European Union

To a British Government worried by too many domestic troubles, the West German Finance Minister, Herr Franz-Josef Strauss, brought words of cheer yesterday [May 19, London]. He said that a united Europe was inconceivable without Britain and that the admission of Britain to the Common Market was a matter of procedure only and not of opinion. He assured that the Bundesbank would be willing to consider favourably a line of credit to the Bank of England if the latter asked for it. He underlined that Britain’s partnership with France in nuclear arms was essential for an effective defence of Europe. Herr Strauss was on a visit to Britain primarily to address the European Atlantic Group. He took the occasion to reiterate, perhaps more forcefully than hitherto, his views on Britain’s position in Europe and these attracted attention not only because they were expressed on British soil but because Herr Strauss is regarded as a possible successor to Dr. Keisinger as Chancellor.

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