HC Deb 10 June 1953 vol 516 cc198-9
11. Sir D. Savory

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has now obtained compensation from the Spanish Government for the damage done on 4th March, 1952, to the Protestant Church in Seville, which is British property.

Mr. Selwyn Lloyd

No, Sir. Her Majesty's Ambassador at Madrid presented a claim for compensation on 10th May, 1952. The Spanish Government have, however, pointed out that before they can admit that Her Majesty's Government have any right to demand compensation, the owners of the chapel must first have recourse to the legal remedies open to them in the Spanish courts. So far as I am aware, they have not yet done this.

Sir D. Savory

Does not compensation imply also redress for the outrage committed to an ordained clergyman in our Church by setting fire to him in his vestments, by piling up the prayer books and hymn books on the Holy Table—an act of sacrilege—and setting fire to them? All these facts have been admitted by my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary.

Mr. Lloyd

The people alleged to be responsible for these outrages are now in the process of coming before the Spanish courts. I think the court of first instance have found that there is a criminal case, and the case will go for trial.