HC Deb 07 March 1887 vol 311 cc1402-3
MR. WATT (Glasgow, Camlachie)

asked the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, If the present boundary line, claimed by the British Government as between British Guiana and the United States of Venezuela, is based upon the Map, Surveys, and Report of Sir Robert Schomberg; if the Government is aware that, antecedent to the Treaty of Munster, the recognized boundary line between Dutch (now British) Guiana and the Spanish (now Venezuelan) territory was the watersheds of the Yuruary, Yuruam, and Cuyuni Rivers; if the Government is aware that the population of these districts contain 90 per cent of British subjects, and an enormous amount of British property; and, if the Government will postpone a final decision on the subject pending further inquiries and information being obtained?

MR. STAVELEY HILL (Stafford shire, Kingswinford)

asked Whether, considering the increasing importance of this matter and the breach of diplomatic relations at Venezuela, the Government would consider the advisability of issuing a Commission to settle the boundaries between British Guiana and Eastern Venezuela?


The boundary line claimed by the British Government is based on the Map, Survey, and Report of Sir Robert Schomberg. It would be impossible, within the limits of my answer, to describe the boundary line of Dutch Guiana and the adjacent Spanish territory previous to the Treaty of Minister, in 1648, as far as it is known to us. Information as to the British population in the Yuruary districts in 1884 is contained in a Report by Vice Consul Reddan, presented to Parliament—Commercial No. 38 of that year. Her Majesty's Government will be careful to collect all the information possible before arriving at any final arrangement. I am unable to answer the Question of the hon. and learned Member (Mr. Staveley Hill) without Notice.