HC Deb 22 April 1909 vol 3 cc1653-4

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will make any statement with regard to the present state of affairs in Turkey; and whether he can make any statement as to what steps are being taken to protect British life and property in the present crisis?


I am unable to say what the final settlement at Constantinople will be, but no disturbances have occurred in the last day or two, and a proclamation issued by the investing Army stated that neutral persons will be protected, and that foreign Embassies and subjects will be un- molested. With regard to other parts of Turkish territory where disturbances may occur, the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty have given permission to His Majesty's Ambassador at Constantinople to arrange direct with the Commander-in-Chief of the Mediterranean station for the despatch of ships to any point at which danger to foreigners may be anticipated. Disturbances have occurred at Adana, Mersina, Tarsus, Antioch, and, it is rumoured, at Burudjik; but, according to our latest intelligence, things appear to be quiet at all these places now. The only places on the coast at which troubles were anticipated were Mersina, Alexandretta, and Beyrout; but at the two latter towns order has been maintained. One of His Majesty's ships has been sent to each of these three places, and 50 sailors have been landed at Alexandretta.


Can the right hon. Gentleman say what naval force is available in the Mediterranean at present?


Perhaps the hon. Member will ask the Admiralty. I do not know the exact composition of the Mediterranean squadron.

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