Three of the Independent party Ministers in the Pflimlin Government decided to resign late tonight.?
Three of the Independent party Ministers in the Pflimlin Government decided to resign late tonight. The party's fourth representative in the Cabinet, M. Mutter for Algeria, has not resigned.
The withdrawal of the three Ministers weakens an already tottering Government. M. Duclos, the Communist Party leader, announced that his group would vote approving the Government's Constitutional Reform Bill. By 112 votes to three, the Socialist group in Parliament adopted a manifesto declaring that in no case would they rally to the canditure of General de Gaulle. In the very form in which it had been presented it was a defiance of Republican legality.
The manifesto added that it was the duty of the legal Government to stay at its post long as it retained the confidence of the majority of the Assembly.
Immediately after General de Gaulle's declaration M. Pflimlin made a full report to the President of the Republic, M. Coty. The General had assured M. Coty that he did not wish to take power at the head of an insurrectional movement and that he was ready to assume the leadership only on a legal basis.
M. Coty himself was apparently willing only to call on de Gaulle to form a Government by constitutional means. He was believed to have pressed the Pflimlin Government to facilitate a quick take-over within the law because of the imminent military threat.
The National Assembly at first appeared dumb founded by General de Gaulle's declaration. But this evening the Socialist party had rallied against the General, with a strongly worded statement. Pflimlin's M.R.P. party decided to join in the mass demonstration of all Republican parties accept the Independents and Right-wing extremists at the Place de la Nation tomorrow, to show their Republican loyalty.
Despite those moves the Deputies continued to express their misgivings that the Pflimlin Government would resign to make way for General de Gaulle. The latest news as at mid-day May 28th is that M. Pflimlin, the French Premier, offered his resignation to the French President - opening talks that could end with the call to power of General de Gaulle.
M. Pflimlin, weary and haggard, handed in his resignation after a fortnight of world-shaking events during which his Government rapidly lost control of the swiftly-changing situation.