12. Mr. NUGENT
asked the Chief Secretary whether he has now been handed over all or in part the 50,000 rifles and the eleven machine guns which were in the possession of the Ulster Volunteers?
§ Mr. SHORTT
The precise figures are not available, but a very substantial number of rifles have been handed voluntarily to the military, and are under their absolute control. An Order has now been issued making it illegal to have arms without a permit, and this Order applies to the whole of Ireland. For all arms handed over voluntarily a receipt is given, and they will be returned when the Regulation forbidding the having of arms without a permit is revoked For military reasons, I cannot state where the arms are now kept.
§ Mr. BOLAND
Can the right hon. Gentleman say, therefore, whether all the German rifles landed have now been taken over by the Government?
§ Mr. SHORTT
I do not know about German rifles, but substantially all the rifles have loyally been handed in.
Is it the fact that the rifles are so numerous that the hon. Gentleman's authorities are not able to count them?
§ Mr. DILLON (by Private Notice)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether the Irish Government have yet taken up the arms of the Ulster Volunteers stated by him?
§ Mr. SPEAKER
That question was asked before the hon. Member came into the House, and was replied to.
§ Mr. DILLON
But it was only partly asked. I ask whether, if these guns were taken up, in whose custody they now are and where, and whether they were handed in subject to any conditions, and if so what the conditions are?