HC Deb 11 February 1946 vol 419 cc2-3
5. Mr. Renton

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he is now in a position to make a statement as to the ultimate disposal of the Italian Colonies in Africa.

Mr. McNeil

The answer is, "No, Sir."

Mr. Renton

Will the hon. Gentleman remind his right hon. Friend that the uncertainty which has prevailed so long in those Colonies is leading to economic depression? Will the matter be expedited as much as may be?

Mr. McNeil

My right hon. Friend will, of course, take into account all these representations, but, as the hon. Gentleman knows, this is not a matter which lies exclusively with us.

20. Mr. Tiffany

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what steps he is taking to fulfil the pledges made to the peoples of the ex-Italian Colonies of Eritrea and ex-Italian Somalia, by loudspeaker and by proclamations distributed by the R.A.F. during the war to defeat the Italians, that when victory was assured they would be permitted to rejoin their ancient motherland, Ethiopia.

Mr. McNeil

As has already been stated in this House, the disposal of the former Italian colonies is, in accordance with the Potsdam decisions, a matter for the Council of Foreign Ministers. His Majesty's Government alone are not, therefore, in a position to give any assurances in this connection.

Mr. Tiffany

Are His Majesty's Government prepared to fulfil the pledges that were given?

Mr. McNeil

The authorship of the pledges to which my hon. Friend referred is slightly doubtful.