HC Deb 18 December 1945 vol 417 cc1107-8
50. Mr. Manning

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether he is in a position to make a statement about the return to Germany, and the procedure to be adopted, of anti-Fascist refugees now in the United Kingdom.

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (Mr. John Hynd)

I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply given on Monday to my hon. Friend the Member for Newport (Mr. P. Freeman).

Mr. De la Bère

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that there have been so many references back today that we do not know what it is all about, and can we have some enlightenment?

Mr. Hynd

The terms of the answer referred to were: I have made arrangements for a certain number of refugees who are asked for by name by the Control Commission in Germany and Austria to go back to their countries. I hope that it will be possible in the near future for larger numbers, particularly those who would assist in the reconstruction of their countries on democratic lines, to be repatriated, but the difficulties of accommodation, particularly in the British Zone of Germany, are very great and the trans port facilities are limited. Applications to return will have to be sifted in accordance with an order of priority and as soon as arrangements can be made to handle applications an announcement will be made. Meanwhile, no good purpose would be served by sending in applications to the Control Office for Germany and Austria or any other Government Department.

Mr. Manning

Could the hon. Gentleman indicate what he means by the words "near future "?

Mr. Hynd

As soon as the difficulties are cleared out of the way—as soon as practicable.

Miss Rathbone

Is my hon. Friend aware that when these men go back to Germany and leave wives and children behind there is no way in which they can send money back to support their families, and will he go into the question of how to meet that difficulty?

Mr. Hynd

That difficulty will be taken into consideration.