HC Deb 12 March 1956 vol 550 cc27-8
46. Mr. Peyton

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will consult the Governments of the United States of America and France, with a view to raising jointly in the General Assembly of the United Nations the question of the kidnappings which have occurred since the end of the war in the three sectors of Western Berlin.

Mr. Dodds-Parker

I do not consider that action to raise this matter in the United Nations would in present circumstances assist the persons concerned or their families.

Mr. Peyton

Can my hon. Friend say whether he has any information as to the number of people concerned in kidnapping from the American and French sectors of Berlin? Will he consider advising his right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary to raise this matter at a very early moment? There may be an opportunity in the very near future. Does not my hon. Friend recognise that very great distress is caused to the relatives of all those concerned in what is a sad, sorry, miserable and wicked episode?

Mr. Dodds-Parker

I agree with my hon. Friend that the position is most unsatisfactory. The failure of the Communists to co-operate in trying to trace these people in these deplorable cases gives rise to the belief that they must have some complicity in them. I am making inquiries about disappearances from the French and United States sectors. I will bring my hon. Friend's third point to the notice of my right hon. Friend when he returns.

Mr. Emrys Hughes

Will the hon. Gentleman tell us how many people kidnapped in Berlin were archbishops? Are not we in a very weak position to raise the question of kidnapping, anyway?

Hon. Members


Mr. Speaker

Order. I do not think that that was a very serious question.