HC Deb 19 July 1878 vol 241 cc1971-2

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty, If he can give the House any further information as to the seizure as prisoners of two Officers of H.M.S. "Swiftsure," and as to the Russians having fired on men-of-war's boats on two occasions; whether Admiral Horn by demanded explanations from the Russian Commander in Chief General Todleben; and, whether satisfaction has been given?


Sir, I am not able, in answer to the Question of the noble Lord, to give any further information as to the seizure of the two officers of H. M. S. Swiftsure. All the information which the Admiralty possesses is, that these officers landed in a skiff, that they were detained, and that they subsequently rejoined their ship; but Admiral Horn by telegraphed to me late last night to this effect— The flag captain of the ship has returned from San Stefano, where he had a satisfactory personal interview with General Todleben. The General stated verbally that he had received no account of the occurrence. He extremely regretted what had taken place, and he promised to send an officer to the Gulf of Saros for the purpose of making inquiries. He felt sure that the officers commanding the district must be ignorant of what had taken place. When I receive a further Report, I will communicate it to the House.


gave Notice, that on Monday he would ask the First Lord of the Admiralty, Whether, in case of satisfaction not being speedily made by the Russians for the insult to the British flag, he will order Admiral Horn by to make reprisals, and to hold them until reparation has been made; and would also ask Mr. Chan- cellor of the Exchequer, whether Russian troops now occupy parts of Turkish territory other than those where they have a right to be in accordance with the provisions of the Treaty of San Stefano or the Treaty of Berlin; and if so, for what reason they remain there; and, whether any representations have been made to induce them to withdraw from the territories of an allied sovereign in a time of peace, where their presence presents frequent occasions of dispute or war?