HC Deb 27 July 1949 vol 467 c2456
24. Mr. Teeling

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what steps he has taken in recent months to bring about an agreement with Tunisia concerning war damage payments to British residents there; and what are the numbers of Maltese and other British subjects respectively, claiming such compensation.

Mr. McNeil

His Majesty's Government have been engaged in assembling the data required before approaching the French Government for an extension of the Anglo-French agreement of 3rd December, 1946, to French overseas territories, including Tunisia. The number of British claims notified to His Majesty's Consul-General at Tunis is 103, of which 80 are Maltese.

Mr. Teeling

Cannot the right hon. Gentleman hurry up this matter a bit? It is now some months since I asked him before, when he said he was trying to do his level best. If it is the case that some Colonies have more trouble than other Colonies, will the right hon. Gentleman try to deal with Tunisia alone, which has the greatest number of British people?

Mr. McNeil

I should be very anxious to help the hon. Gentleman but I scarcely, think that it would be practicable to discuss Tunisia alone. Any extension in the agreement will depend upon the clause in the parent agreement relating to reciprocity. We must therefore have a full picture on either side before we discuss the agreement.