HC Deb 26 April 1944 vol 399 cc746-7
9. Mr. G. Strauss

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what replies he has received to the representations made to the Governments of Turkey, Sweden and Portugal in regard to the despatch from those countries to Germany of vital war materials.

Mr. Eden

As regards the representations which His Majesty's Ambassador at Angora and his United States colleague recently made to the Turkish Government on the general question of economic assistance to Germany, I am happy to tell the hon. Member that the Turkish reply was most friendly and co-operative in nature. He will also have heard of the announcement made in the National Assembly by the Turkish Minister for Foreign Affairs that, as from 21st April onwards, the Turkish Government had decided to prohibit the export of chrome to Germany or her Allies. I should add that at the same time the Minister for Foreign Affairs made it clear that Turkey would continue to supply chrome to the United Kingdom. As regards Sweden, I understand that my hon. Friend, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Economic Warfare, is making a statement after Questions. As regards Portugal negotiations are still in progress with a view to limiting the export of wolfram to Germany. I hope shortly to be in a position to make a statement on this subject.

Mr. Strauss

In regard to Portugal, which country seems the most unhelpful, can the right hon. Gentleman not make representations to the Portuguese Government that the people of this country will not forget that thousands of their sons owe, and others probably will owe, their deaths to the twenty-fold increase of wolfram supplies from Portugal to Germany?

Mr. Eden

I am not sure that I accept the hon. Gentleman's figures and I am not sure that they are right, but I think I can say that we have made it quite plain to the Portuguese Government that we think we have a right to ask that this traffic shall cease.