HC Deb 05 February 1957 vol 564 c237
44. Mr. Brockway

asked the Secretary of State for War on whose authority orders were issued for a local exercise in Malta by the Fortress Squadron of the Royal Engineers describing the enemy as "Melita under the command of the notorious leader Mintoffovich," in view of the fact that Melita is the Phoenician name for Malta and the name of the Prime Minister is Mr. Mintoff.

Mr. Hare

The exercise in map reading was prepared by a junior officer for his troop. The General Officer Commanding, immediately he heard of the matter, sent his personal apologies to Mr. Mintoff, who courteously accepted them in a friendly way.

Mr. Brockway

Would the right hon. Gentleman take this opportunity of expressing also, on behalf of this House—[HON. MEMBERS: "No."] Why not? Would he at least indicate that on this side of the House we very much resent an insult made to the people of Malta and to its Prime Minister?

Mr. Hare

An apology has been made and has been graciously accepted. I personally would add that it was unfortunate that this indiscretion occurred, and, in fact, this officer bus been dealt with personally by his commanding officer.