HC Deb 18 March 1942 vol 378 c1481
1. Mr. Slander

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, whether he will be prepared to consent to the liquidation by the Emperor of Ethiopia's Government of the properties confiscated by Italy during the occupation of Ethiopia; and whether the properties it is proposed to sequestrate for disposal by the peace conference are only those acquired lawfully by Italians before the Italian invasion, excluding properties acquired by para-state companies, privately owned and controlled organisations, state or otherwise, for the settlement of Italians in Ethiopia, lands acquired by grant or purchased by individual Italian farmers or groups of smallholders, monopolies for supplying light, water, hotels, &c.?

The Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Eden)

I have no reliable information concerning the properties or monopolies to which my hon. Friend refers, nor have I received any request from the Emperor of Ethiopia for advice in respect of the action which his government may contemplate taking in these matters.

Mr. Mander

Can the right hon. Gentleman give an assurance that we are not protecting enemy property in order that it may be handed back after the war?

Mr. Eden

I can most definitely give that assurance.