HC Deb 12 July 1917 vol 95 cc2085-6
4. Major HUNT

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether his attention has been called to the official report to the American Government which reveals the fact that quantities of materials for the manufacture of munitions are being shipped to Germany from Sweden, and that these shipments were supplemented by the imports from the United States, and that during the last two years Sweden exported to Germany 2,000,000 tons of ore, and, in addition, large quantities of other necessary ores, and 200,000 tons of wood pulp for the manufacture of high explosives; and whether, after nearly three years of war, and in view of the action of America, the Foreign Office will assist the Americans to make the blockade really effective?


It is true that in the last two years Sweden has exported large quantities of iron ore, wood pulp, and other commodities produced in Sweden to enemy countries. These commodities are the product of Sweden, and when exported to Germany across the Baltic they do not pass through our blockade; but the Allied countries welcome the action of the United States Government, taken with a view to prevent such supplies reaching the enemy. I am not aware of any imports into Sweden of these articles during the past eighteen months.

Major HUNT

Is the Noble Lord aware that the American statement is that some of these materials do come from America, and therefore do come by sea; and may we understand now from the right hon. Gentleman's answer that the British Government are really going to take the gloves off at last?


I do not know in the least what is the meaning of the insinuation in the hon. Gentleman's last sentence, but I may say that the blockade has been enforced with the utmost power and we have exerted the full belligerent rights of this country ever since I have had anything to do with it.

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