HC Deb 04 March 1946 vol 420 c34
78. Mr. Longden

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what action he is taking, in view of the fresh decision of the Greek Government, following his support of an immediate election, to postpone the General Election on the grounds of inadequate party readiness and electoral preparedness; and if he will request the Greek Government immediately to release Left political prisoners and give their movements the right and time to organise.

84. Mr. Frederick Willey .

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether, in view of the general desire among the Greek political parties for postponement, steps will be taken to ensure that the General Election in Greece is postponed

Mr. Noel-Baker

My hon. Friends have no doubt seen the statement made by the Greek Prime Minister on 1st March, in which he said that the General Election would be held, as arranged, on 31st March. A large proportion of the political prisoners who have appealed for release have, in fact, been given then freedom, and more will be released before the end of March. In any case, all the parties have had the unhampered right and ample time to organise their movements for the Election. In our view no good purpose would be served by postponement. According to our information the great majority of the Greek people are anxious to express their view through the ballot boxes.

Mr. McGovern

Can the Minister assure us that if any of these people held in prison are candidates at the Election they will be freed in order to conduct their campaign?

Mr. Noel-Baker

I would like to have notice of that question.

Back to