HC Deb 05 December 1938 vol 342 cc846-7
8. Mr. W. A. Robinson

asked the Prime Minister whether there has been published any report of the organisation and work of the Inter-Governmental Committee on Refugees?

Mr. Butler

Full information regarding the organisation of the committee will be found in the authorised statements issued by the committee at the conclusion of its meetings in August last. Since then the director has been in constant contact with the members of the committee, but no report has been issued.

Mr. Robinson

Will my hon. Friend agree that the position of refugees now is much different and much more important and direct than it was in August last year, and will he keep in constant touch with the Department concerned?

Mr. Butler

Yes, Sir. Certainly the position has become very different.

15. Mr. Errington

asked the Prime Minister whether he is aware that it is easier for orthodox Jewish refugees to get out of Germany and to enter this country than Christlan refugees, who by reason of Jewish descent are considered to be Jews in Germany; and whether he will take steps to ensure equality so far as possible between these two classes?

Mr. Butler

As my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department stated in reply to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Wellingborough (Wing-Commander James) on 24th November, His Majesty's Government make no distinction between refugees of Jewish religion and Christlan refugees of Jewish descent, or indeed between refugees of any kind. All have equal opportunities of entering the United Kingdom, providing that their maintenance, including plans for their settlement in this country or elsewhere, [...] assured.

Mr. Errington

Is there equality in getting out of Germany, apart from getting into this country?

Mr. Butler

We cannot control matters at that end.

18. Mr. Lathan

asked the Prime Minister whether, having regard to the responsibilities of this country arising out of the Munich Agreement, he will arrange for the services of British Consular and other representatives to be available for refugees from Czechoslavakla who emigrate to countries where there are no Czechoslovaklan representatives to assist them?

Mr. Butler

I cannot accept the assumption on which the hon. Member's question is based, and I fear that his suggestion is not a practicable one.

Mr. Lathan

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that there is no proper recognition of the rights of these unfortunate people and that this matter arises out of what happened at Munich; and does he not appreciate the fact that, apart from the assistance which British representatives, can give them, they are now practically-without anybody at all to help them?

Mr. Butler

His Majesty's Government are doing their best to deal with the serious nature of the refugee problem.