Britain was accused on Monday (August 16th) of failing to grasp the opportunity offered by the Maltese Government to re-negotiate the agreement for the continued use of military base facilities on Malta.
LV Crowds outside Parliament.
MV PAN Crowd applauds as cars arrive.
MV PAN Car arrives and crowd jeer.
SV People on window ledge.
GV Crowds mob car.
GV Interior Parliamentarians, Olivier in foreground.
Sir Anthony Mamo speaking, ZOOM IN to CU of Mintoff.
GV Mamo speaking.
CU Church official.
GV ZOOM IN to Mamo speaking.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Britain was accused on Monday (August 16th) of failing to grasp the opportunity offered by the Maltese Government to re-negotiate the agreement for the continued use of military base facilities on Malta. The accusation came during the speech from the throne at the opening of Parliament, by the Governor-General, Sir Anthony Mamo. Negotiations, he said, were continuing.
Britain, in agreement with its NATO allies, is reported to have offered Malta an annual cash payment of five million pounds and a further three and a half million a year in development aid. The amount the Government Prime Minister, Dom Mintoff, wants has never been disclosed, but some reports have put it as highly as 30 million pounds.
Thousands of Maltese gathered outside the Parliament building in Valetta to greet the members and their invited arriving for the opening ceremony. Government members were loudly cheered and opposition members heckled. The British High Commissioner, Sir Duncan Watson, was loudly heckled and the Soviet Ambassador to London, Mr. Mikhail Smirnovsky, cheered.