HC Deb 02 December 1867 vol 190 cc520-1

asked the Secretary of State for India, Whether the following statement in the morning newspapers was correct:— Communication by the Indo-European telegraph lines is interrupted owing to a defect in the Persian Gulf cable; also, whether there was any certainty of a land line of telegraph wires from Egypt to Massowah being completed before the rainy season commenced in Abyssinia?


said, it was true that the communications by the Indo-European telegraph lines had been partially interrupted, but it was not in consequence of any defect of the cable, but of a breakage which appeared to have taken place about 100 miles from Constantinople. That circumstance occasioned some small delay; but the communication was kept up over the injured part by means of messengers. He yesterday received separate telegraphic despatches from India which were rather behind their time, the earliest being dated the 25th and the last the 27th of November. He apprehended, therefore, that communications were still open, though messages were partially delayed in consequence of the break. With regard to the second Question, he was not aware precisely of the state of forwardness of the Egyptian land line telegraph; but he did not think there would be any means of telegraphic communication completed to Massowah before the commencement of the rainy season.

In reply to Lord JOHN HAY,


said, he presumed commercial messages were forwarded by messengers over the broken part of the line in the same manner as Government messages; but he had no information on the subject.