§ 7. Mr. GRANT
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has had his attention drawn to a statement that the handicap of the allied diplomacy in the Balkans has been greatly increased owing to the adhesion to the alliance of Italy with her special claims on the Eastern Adriatic seaboard; and whether he is in a position to make any statement on the subject?
§ Lord ROBERT CECIL
I regret very much that this statement should have been made.
Italian co-operation was, and is, most cordially welcomed by His Majesty's Government and their Allies on every ground, and any statement to the contrary is entirely opposed to their views. It would be very unfortunate if any importance were attributed abroad to statements which appeared to imply that there was not complete harmony and good-feeling between ourselves and our Allies. The whole tone of the British Press generally does, I hope, counteract that impression, but it is most desirable that while indulging in criticism or advocating particular measures at home, care should be taken to avoid any statements which may be used by our enemies abroad with effect for a purpose which the writers did not intend and which is very injurious to this country.
It is beyond the power of the Censorship to protect the country from this risk, and we can only rely on the patriotism of the Press.