§ 41 Lieut.-Colonel Profumo
asked the Secretary of State for War (1) whether he will examine the possibilities of a mare extensive use of Allied 'bomber aircraft as a means of transport, in order to increase the present scale of home leave from the Mediterranean and the Far East;
(2) whether the Government has now been able to make such adjustments to the forces occupying Germany and Italy as to allow a reduction of the qualifying 674 period of service overseas for tine Python repatriation scheme;
(3) whether, since there are no longer any military operations in, the European theatre, he will take steps to ensure that troops who have served long periods in the M.E.F. and C.M.F. and have since been transferred to the B.L.A. without receiving the period of home leave to which they are entitled, shall be granted more than a week's leave on their first return to this country.
§ 43. Mr. T. J. Brooks
asked the Secretary of State for War, now that the European war is at an end if he will consider reducing by one year the period of ser vice abroad, particularly in the S.E.A.C, in Assam and Burma; and why men who have served over three years in these districts now that their repatriation is imminent have had their disembarkation leave reduced from 28 days to 21 days.
§ 44. Mr. Glenvil Hall
asked the Secretary of State for War if he is aware that men who fought with the 50th (N) Division in North Africa, were in the invasion of Sicily, have seen service in Europe from D plus six, including the Nijmegen salient and are in fairly early release groups, have been warned for service in the Far East; and if he will, in the light of these facts, say what limitations as to age, release group and fighting service overseas are applied before men are drafted to the Far East.
70. Mr. McNeil
asked the Secretary of State for War if he has now been able to reduce the qualifying period for the Python leave scheme to three years or less.
76. Major Woollcy
asked the Secretary of State for War what arrangements are now being made to provide additional home leave for those men now serving overseas.
§ 82. Mr. Palmer
asked the Secretary of State for War whether steps are being taken to make use of the rail route from Italy to facilitate an increase in the volume of home leave for Army personnel serving there.
§ 84. Mr. Mathers
asked the Secretary of State for War whether the amount of shipping available will enable troops serving overseas to return earlier to this country; and whether he will state the 675 maximum periods of service now applicable to the different theatres of operations.
§ 87. Mr. Cluse
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware of the feeling amongst the Servicemen abroad that they are being unfairly treated in the allocation of home leave; that many have served long periods without a break; that some are performing duties not vital to the war effort; and will he do his utmost to facilitate the granting of leave to those who have served long periods abroad.
§ 90. Mr. Oliver
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware of the general dissatisfaction among the Forces in the C.M.F., M.E.F. and S.E.A.C of his refusal to shorten the period of service qualifying for home leave, having regard to the cessation of hostilities in the West; and whether there is any immediate prospect of a revision of the period of 4½ to 3 years.
§ 94. Mr. Lipson
asked the Secretary of State for War if he is aware of the disappointment felt by men who have served in North Africa and Italy and have been away four years without home leave; and will he now implement the undertaking that, after the war in Europe had been won, overseas service would be reduced to three years.
§ 95. Mr. Francis Watt
asked the Secretary of State for War if he is aware that the absence of any home leave for the troops in Italy is causing acute dissatisfaction among them; and will he take steps to have home leave for these men introduced as soon as possible.
§ 99. Sir H. Williams
asked the Secretary of State for War when the troops who have been serving in the Mediterranean zone four years or over will be repatriated, and when those who have been serving three years or more will be repatriated.
§ 100. Mr. Walter Edwards
asked the Secretary of State for War whether, in view of the cessation of hostilities in Europe, the necessary adjustments have yet been made to enable a reduction in the length of service overseas to be made.
§ 122. Mr. C. S. Taylor
asked the Secretary of State for War whether it is now possible to reduce the length of over seas service in the C.M.F.
§ 123. Mr. Vernon Bartlett
asked the Secretary of State for War, in view of the termination of hostilities in Europe, what are the lastest arrangements for home leave for men in the B.L.A.
Sir J. Griģģ
It is very difficult to deal with all these matters in reply to Questions and I hope hon. Members will allow me to deal with them at greater length in the course of the Debate on Friday.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Profumo
Will my right hon. Friend be in a position to give an answer to this Question in the Debate on Friday?
Sir J. Griģģ
Having contracted to make a statement on these things, there is a certain obligation that I should say something.
§ Mr. Glenvil Hall
As one of those Questions is mine may I ask for your guidance, Mr. Speaker? The right hon. Gentleman has chosen a most unusual procedure, and may I ask whether there is anything we can do now to get answers to our Questions?
Sir J. Griģģ
I have told the hon. Member that I have every intention of answering, to the best of my ability, all these Questions in a general statement which I will make on Friday.