HC Deb 09 February 1922 vol 150 c289
28. Colonel Sir A, HOLBROOK

asked the Prime Minister whether his attention has been called to the observations of the German delegates at the Peace Conference concerning the permissive power to attach the movable property of citizens of German birth domiciled in neutral or Allied countries conferred on the Allies by Article 297 (b) of the German Peace Treaty; whether the Commonwealth of South Africa and any other, and which, of the British States, parties to the Peace Treaty, have resolved not to exercise such permissive power in respect of citizens habitually resident abroad from Germany and over whom the German Government neither exercises nor claims to exercise authority or control; and whether His Majesty's Government will give directions that in the cases of individuals of alien enemy birth, particularly spinsters and widows, and women of English birth married to Germans domiciled in this country or in neutral countries before the War, the permissive power conferred under Article 297 (b) should not be exercised to attach such property in Great Britain?

The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of TRADE (Mr. S. Baldwin)

I have been asked to reply. In general, the policy adopted by the Governments of the British Dominions is understood to be to release (subject in certain cases to a fixed maximum) the property of German nationals residing in the Empire. As to the course adopted in this country, I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the reply given to the right hon. Member for Camborne on 15th November, 1920, of which I am sending him a copy. The property of British-born widows of ex-enemy nationals is released upon this renaturalisation. I cannot at present give any promise of a general release of the property of ex-enemies resident in the United Kingdom.