• Short Summary

    BRITAIN'S PRIME MINISTER HAROLD WILSON ARRIVED YESTERDAY (THURSDAY) IN NIGERIA AND WAS GREETED AT LAGOS AIRPORT BY THE NIGERIAN HEAD OF STATE, MAJOR-GENERAL YAKUBU GOWON.

  • Description


    AIRCRAFT TAXIES; GOWON WALKING TO AIRCRAFT; WILSON STEPS DOWN FROM AIRCRAFT AND GREETED BY GOWON; BOTH INSPECT GUARD OF HONOUR; GOWON AND WILSON SPEAKING IN PRESS ROOM AT AIRPORT (SOF).



    TRANSCRIPT: GOWON: "THE PURPOSE OF YOUR PRESENT VISIT IS VERY CLEAR AND I LOOK FORWARD TO HAVING FRUITFUL DISCUSSIONS WITH YOU IN THE NEXT FEW DAYS. AS I EXPECT TOO, NO DRAMATIC PEACE INITIATIVE ON YOUR PART AND I HAVE NOTED WITH GREAT INTEREST AND APPRECIATION YOUR REMARKS THAT YOU ARE NOT COMING TO NIGERIA TO MEDIATE IN THE CIVIL WAR. NEVERTHELESS, I WISH TO ASSURE YOU THAT MY GOVERNMENT IS AS WILLING AS EVER TO GO TO THE CONFERENCE TABLE FOR NEGOTIATIONS AT ANY TIME PROVIDED THIS WOULD BRING ABOUT A LASTING SOLUTION TO OUR PRESENT CRISIS."



    WILSON: "MY PURPOSE IN COMING, AS YOU HAVE SAID, YOUR EXCELLENCY, IS NOT TO SEEK TO INTERFERED IN MATTERS WHICH CAN BE SETTLED ONLY BY NIGERIANS, WITH THE ACTIVE HEP IF HELP IS SOUGHT, OF FELLOW AFRICANS THROUGHOUT THIS CONTINENT. MY PURPOSE IS RATHER, WITHIN THE LIMITATIONS FROM WHICH ANYONE, AND NOT HIMSELF A NIGERIAN, SUFFERS IN GETTING AT THE CAUSE OF THOSE ANXIETIES, TO DO EVERYTHING THAT I CAN DURING THIS BRIEF VISIT, TO DO EVERYTHING THAT WE CAN TOGETHER TO HELP MITIGATE THE SUFFERINGS OF YOUR COUNTRY OF ITS PEOPLES AND NOT LEAST OF ITS CHILDREN BY DISCUSSION, EXAMINATION AND ANALYSIS OF THE FACTS."




    Initials LD/VS/CR/ES



    Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

    Background: BRITAIN'S PRIME MINISTER HAROLD WILSON ARRIVED YESTERDAY (THURSDAY) IN NIGERIA AND WAS GREETED AT LAGOS AIRPORT BY THE NIGERIAN HEAD OF STATE, MAJOR-GENERAL YAKUBU GOWON. IN HIS WELCOMING SPEECH, GENERAL GOWON STATED THAT HE WAS LOOKING FORWARD TO "FRUITFUL DISCUSSIONS"; AND MR WILSON SAID THAT HE WAS NOT THERE TO "INTERFERE" BUT TO HELP "MITIGATE THE SUFFERING" OF THE COUNTRY AND ITS PEOPLE, ESPECIALLY THE CHILDREN.

    TALKS BETWEEN THE TWO LEADERS BEGAN TODAY (FRIDAY) AND THE KEY ISSUES ARE EXPECTED TO BE THE BRITISH SUPPLY OF ARMS TO FEDERAL NIGERIA AND THE BOMBING OF BREAKAWAY BIAFRA.

    GENERAL GOWON IS REPORTED TO BE PRESSING FOR MORE ARMS FOR A FINAL PUSH AGAINST BIAFRA. THERE HAVE BEEN RECENT NIGERIAN COMPLAINTS OF DELAYS IN ARMS DELIVERIES FROM BRITISH FIRMS AND SUGGESTIONS THAT WEAPONS AND AMMUNITION SHOULD BE PROVIDED BY THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT. MR WILSON IS EXPECTED TO GIVE THE FEDERAL LEADERS A PERSONAL REPORT ON THE OPPOSITION IN BRITAIN TO THE ARMS POLICY AND THE CONCERN ABOUT REPORTS OF INDISCRIMINATE AIR RAIDS ON BIAFRAN VILLAGES. THEE IS ALSO SPECULATION THAT HE MAY ASK FOR A PAUSE IN ALL BOMBING AGAINST BIAFRA WHILE EFFORTS ARE MADE TO GET THE PEACE TALKS RESTARTED.

    AT YESTERDAY'S OFFICIAL RECEPTION AT LAGOS AIRPORT, GENERAL GOWON SAID:
    TO WHICH MR WILSON REPLIED:

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA1Q8BWN0QAV3EPEGHXU1SOHQJQ
    Media URN:
    VLVA1Q8BWN0QAV3EPEGHXU1SOHQJQ
    Group:
    Reuters - Including Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    28/03/1969
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:02:54:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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