HC Deb 21 April 1926 vol 194 cc1194-5
27. Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether it has been found possible to return those ships of war to their stations for the prevention of the slave traffic in the Red Sea or to replace the ships withdrawn from this duty on account of the disturbances in the Hedjaz by other suitable vessels; whether he is aware that boat cruising was found of value in the past for the suppression of this traffic; and whether boat cruising is still carried on?


His Majesty's ships in the Red Sea have now resumed their usual patrol duties. Boat cruising has been carried out in the past to a limited extent off the coast of British Somaliland to suppress illicit arms traffic, but it was not found to be of much value. The strong winds which prevail in the Red Sea render it necessary that patrol craft should be of considerable size and capable of steaming from 12 to 14 knots. The conditions are therefore not suitable for boat cruising, and it is not carried on.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that boat cruising was formerly carried out for extended periods with good results, and would he consider its reintroduction?


I have said it was carried on, but in larger vessels.

Lieut. - Commander KENWORTHY

Was not the right hon. Gentleman referring to cruising for suppression of arms traffic, but was it not also successfully employed against slave traffic?


My answer covers both.