§ 4. Mr. Sorensen
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether any 1935 restrictions have been imposed by General Franco and the insurgent forces on British nationals and British commercial and industrial interests in the Basque area; and, if so, of what nature?
Have we any commercial representative with General Franco with whom we may make a trade agreement when it is possible?
§ Mr. Sorensen
May we take it that no British mining interests more or less adjacent to Bilbao are affected, or likely to be affected?
§ Mr. G. Strauss
Will the Government take steps to see that supplies of iron ore from the Basque territory will he available to this country in the future as in the past?
§ 5. Mr. Sorensen
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he possesses, or will secure, information respecting the approximate number killed, wounded, and taken prisoner by both the insurgents and the Spanish Government in Spain since the beginning of hostilities?
§ Mr. Sorensen
Does the right hon. Gentleman intend to secure some information: Surely that would be most valuable as showing the results of modern warfare?
§ 6. Mr. Sorensen
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will take steps to ascertain and publish the 1936 nature and extent of foreign assistance in men and material at the disposal of each side in Spain?
§ Mr. Lennox-Boyd
Can the right hon. Gentleman assure the House that no ships have left Odessa laden with munitions of war since the signing by Russia of the Non-Intervention Agreement?
§ 8. Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will instruct the British Ambassador in Rome to ask for an elucidation of the public statement by the head of the Italian Government that Italy has not been neutral in Spain but has fought and that victory will be hers, observing that this utterance appears to be inconsistent with Italy's participation in the work of the Non-Intervention Committee?
§ Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
Has not the right hon. Gentleman's attention been called to this public utterance?
§ Miss Wilkinson
When has a statement to be issued, and in what form, to induce the Foreign Secretary to take any notice of it if he does not want to?
§ Commander Bower
Will my right hon. Friend instruct the British Ambassador in Rome to inform the Italian Government that public opinion in this country is in no way represented by the hostile antics of the Opposition?
§ 9. Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has any information to give 1937 the House concerning the note presented by the Portuguese Ambassador on 26th June?
§ 14. Mr. Wedgwood Benn
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the control scheme is operating effectively in Portugal; and whether the Portuguese Government is giving the agreed facilities to the duly appointed observers?
§ Mr. Eden
The Portuguese Government have informed His Majesty's Government that, in view of the gap in the work of naval observation caused by the withdrawal of Germany and Italy from the naval patrol, they must reserve the right to withdraw from the scheme of observation at sea in the event of the continuance of the present circumstances, and that they have decided to suspend for the time being the facilities granted to His Majesty's Embassy at Lisbon for the purpose of carrying out the scheme of observation on the Portuguese-Spanish frontier. Pending the consideration of the working of the naval patrol by the Non-Intervention Committee, however, the Portuguese Government will continue to observe their engagements in regard to the export of arms from, or in transit through, Portugal to Spain and in regard to Portuguese merchant ships proceeding to Spanish ports. The necessary decrees to give effect to these engagements remain in force. His Majesty's Government have made it clear to the Portuguese Government that they regret the decision, and, in reply, have been given to understand that, if general assent is obtained in principle in the Non-Intervention Committee for a plan for the re-establishment of maritime control, the Portuguese Government will consider the prompt resumption of their duties by the observers. In the meantime, the latter remain at their posts along the frontier, and would be able to resume their duties at the shortest notice.
§ Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
Is not this step by the Portuguese Government quite unjustifiable, and only dictated by a desire to frustrate the work of the Committee?
§ 11. Mr. Noel-Baker
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the Governments of Germany and Italy have yet agreed to the scheme for the evacuation of foreign troops from Spain prepared by the Non-Intervention Committee?
§ Mr. Eden
I would refer the hon. Member to the answer which I gave him on 21st June. I understand that the Non-Intervention Committee had under consideration yesterday the report of the technical Sub-Committee and the additional proposals which His Majesty's Government had themselves made on this subject, and that a further suggestion was put forward by the French representative with a view to the immediate withdrawal of all non-Spanish prisoners of war or wounded. These proposals are still under consideration and will be on the agenda for the Committee's next meeting on Friday.
§ Mr. Mander
Is it not perfectly clear that the Germans and Italians are determined that the non-intervention scheme shall not work?
§ 12. Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if Germany and Italy remain associated with that part of the commission of control scheme which provides for international observers on board merchant vessels and at the Spanish frontiers?
§ Mr. Eden
As the House is aware, all observing officers of German and Italian 1939 nationality have withdrawn from service under the scheme. I understand, however, that German and Italian ships are continuing to comply with the procedure laid down under the scheme of observation of the Spanish coasts.
Mr. De la Bère
Is not the right. hon. Gentleman aware that somewhere a voice is calling "Britannia rules the waves: get rid of the Spanish obsession before we are all in our graves"?
§ 16. Mr. Noel-Baker
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty how many ships flying the British, Spanish, or other flags and engaged on evacuating refugees from Santander have received the protection of His Majesty's ships?
§ The First Lord of the Admiralty (Mr. Duff Cooper)
The only ship evacuating refugees from Santander to receive British naval protection has been the British steamship "Marian Moller."
§ Mr. A. Henderson
(by Private Notice) asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he is now in a position to make a statement as to the steps which have been taken to mainatin the effectiveness of the naval control off the coast of Spain following the withdrawal of the German and Italian Governments?
§ Mr. Eden
The position in regard to the scheme of observation at sea was considered yesterday by the Chairman's Sub- 1940 committee of the Non-Intervention Committee. As the House is no doubt already aware from the communiqué which was published after the meeting, the United Kingdom representative outlined certain proposals for reconstituting the Naval Observation Scheme, which the United Kingdom and French Governments had agreed to submit to the committee. Under these proposals the United Kingdom and French Governments are prepared to assume responsibility for the operation of the naval observation scheme in respect of the whole of the coasts of Spain, and have agreed in principle to the appointment of neutral observers to be stationed on the patrol ships. The two Governments are agreed that the United Kingdom Government should be responsible for the naval observation of those parts of the coast of Spain now in the hands of the Spanish Government, and that the two Governments should share responsibility for the observation of those parts of the coast now in the hands of General Franco on a basis to be arranged between the two Governments. By far the greater part of the last named coasts would inevitably require to be included in the French zone.
In the course of a general exchange of views, the German and Italian representatives, while declaring their willingness to transmit these proposals to their respective Governments, pointed out their strong objections in principle against any proposal which was not based upon the necessary equilibrium to ensure absolute impartiality of control. The other representatives also undertook to submit the proposals to their respective Governments, and the matter will be considered again at a further meeting which is to be held on Friday.
§ Mr. Henderson
Did either the German or Italian Government put forward alternative proposals to those put forward by His Majesty's Government?
§ Mr. Attlee
(by Private Notice) asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he can now make any further statement with regard to the evacuation of refugees from Santander?
§ Mr. Eden
Since the reply which I gave on this subject to a question asked by the 1941 right hon. Gentleman yesterday, I have been in repeated communication with the French Government with regard to the reception of further refugees in France and the setting up of the necessary measures of control, and have represented to them the urgent nature of the problem. I have again been in communication with the French Ambassador this morning, and I understand from him that the French Government have this question under most urgent consideration and hope to be able to transmit proposals to His ' Majesty's Government this afternoon.