HC Deb 04 May 1927 vol 205 cc1596-7
2. Colonel DAY

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he has received a report of the bombardment of any warships by the Southern Nationalist batteries in Chinese waters; whether these bombardments have caused any casualties; and whether he can make a statement to the House?


Continual reports have been received of firing on foreign vessels by Southern Nationalist batteries on the River Yangtse since the arrival of the Nationalist forces on that river. Since 1st April, 11 cases have been reported of firing on British warships, and three cases of firing on United States warships. In each case fire was returned by the warship attacked. Three British casualties have been reported, and it was stated that there were four casualties recently on the American mine-sweeper "Penguin." In addition, there have been continual reports of firing at merchant vessels.

Colonel DAY

Is the damage done by this firing very considerable?

Lieut.-Colonel HEADLAM

I am glad to say that the casualties are reported to be slight—I mean the nature of the casualties.


Is bombardment of this nature on the increase or decrease as the result of the return firing which is authorised?

Lieut.-Colonel HEADLAM

It is impossible for me to answer that question; I can only refer my hon. Friend to what I have already told him.


Can the hon. and gallant Gentleman say whether the firing referred to was artillery fire, or only rifle fire?

Lieut.-Colonel HEADLAM

I gather that it was both.

Back to