HC Deb 13 April 1948 vol 449 c776
19. Mr. Skeffington-Lodge

asked the Secretary of State for War what action is being taken to apply to German prisoners of war in the Middle East those provisions operating for men in this country under the auspices of the War Office, the Foreign Office and the Ministries of Agriculture and Labour.

Mr. Shinwell

The possibility of prisoners of war now in the Middle East being offered employment by my Department in North Africa as civilians is under consideration.

Mr. Skeffington-Lodge

Is the right hon. Gentleman prepared to give an assurance that in no circumstances will any of these prisoners be forced back to their original homes if there is any reason to fear that they will suffer political or religious persecution when they get there? That provision has been applied to prisoners in this country.

Mr. Shinwell

I can only give a guarantee in reply to a question relevant to the subject of the Question on the Paper.

Mr. Skeffington-Lodge

But it is relevant.

Mr. Stokes

May I ask whether the question of giving them employment in this country is also under consideration, in view of the fact that the Ministry of Labour are at the present time looking for recruits in Germany itself?

Mr. Driberg

Since the Question includes the Foreign Office, is provision for educational facilities also made, similar to the excellent re-education scheme for prisoners in this country?

Mr. Shinwell

As I have said, the whole matter is under consideration, but my answer only applies to employment in North Africa.

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