HC Deb 16 November 1949 vol 469 cc2016-7
29. Mr. Symonds

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if the United Kingdom representatives at the United Nations have agreed to the proposal to hand over to the International Red Cross the responsibility for tracing and returning to their parents Greek children abducted by the rebel forces during the civil war; what interest in the welfare of such children is row taken by the United Nations; and what is the present position with regard to them.

Mr. Bevin

Yes, Sir, the United Kingdom delegate supported a resolution passed unanimously on 3rd November by the Political Committee of the United Nations Assembly, which recommended that the International Red Cross should be requested to continue their efforts to arrange the return to their homes of the children removed from Greece. During the course of tie past year representatives of the International Red Cross visited Greece, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia, and corresponded on the subject with the Red Cross societies of those countries and with those of Albania, Hungary and Roumania. No children have, however, yet been returned to their homes from any of these countries.

Mr. Symonds

Is my right hon. Friend aware that many people interested in the welfare of these children have found it rather difficult lately to find out just what the situation is with regard to them, and that if he can give an assurance that the United Nations are still taking a close interest in the matter it will be reassuring?

Mr. Bevin

I am pressing them to do that. I think it is one of the scandals of the age.