HC Deb 14 July 1884 vol 290 cc916-7

asked the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Has the Government yet heard whether General Gordon has received either of the Government Despatches of 23rd April or 18th May; has the Government recently made any effort to communicate with General Gordon; what is the date of the last despatch sent to General Gordon, and of the last Despatch received from him; and, what is the present position of General Gordon?


No, Sir; I have already, on several previous occasions, stated in this House that the last despatch to General Gordon was dated from London on the 17th of May, while that received from him bore date the 10th of April. Her Majesty's Government have not yet heard whether General Gordon has received the despatches to which the right hon. and learned Gentleman refers, and it is impossible to state exactly what his present position is. Every possible endeavour by means of messengers has been made to communicate with him; and I have already informed the House of the steps which have been taken with that object. Certain other attempts have also been made to communicate; but it is not desirable to enter into details. A report has reached Wady Halfa to the effect that M. Cuzzi had proceeded to Khartoum after the fall of Berber, and that General Gordon was making constant sallies.


Has the noble Lord any news respecting Dongola?


I have nothing to add to the statement I made the other day—that the news from Dongola is dated the 10th of June.