§ 2. Mr. WILLIAM THORNE
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, whether six Socialist members of the Russian Duma have been sentenced by courts-martial to terms of imprisonment 532 for advocating Socialist principles; and whether he will make representations to the Russian Government on this matter, in view of the advisability at the present time of securing as cordial relations as possible between the two nations?
According to information that has reached me, five Social Democrat members of the Duma have been arrested and will shortly be sent for trial. They were found at a secret meeting held by members of Socialist organisations with a view to starting a secret anti-war propaganda. Papers have been seized which are said to support this charge, and a proposal to protest against this arrest of its members has been refused by the Duma; but in any case I must remind the hon. member that His Majesty's Government cannot concern themselves, especially at this moment, with internal affairs of other countries.