HC Deb 06 April 1948 vol 449 c3
7. Sir Waldron Smithers

asked the Secretary of State for War if he is aware that two officers holding His Majesty's commission, Major C. H. H. Young and Captain Vivian, are respectively on bail and in gaol in Burma; and what steps he will take to protect their interests.

Mr. M. Stewart

Both these ex-Indian Army officers are alleged to have committed very serious civil offences. One has been sentenced to two years' imprisonment, but is appealing against this sentence. The trial of the other officer is not yet complete. The British Military Mission are watching their interests.

Sir W. Smithers

Is the Minister aware that there is a great question of principle and of the prestige of Britain involved here? Is he aware that these two officers, and, incidentally, U Saw, who is to be hanged on 9th April, were convicted under British rule, and at that time had a right of appeal to the Privy Council, and that that right has now been taken away? Will he do what he can to see that British justice is vindicated?

Mr. Stewart

The Government of Burma have the power to hold these officers and try them, but the British Military Mission are keeping us closely informed of all developments.

Sir W. Smithers

Will the Minister give them a right of appeal?