§ 9. Mr. Stonehouse
asked the Minister of State for Commonwealth Relations what facilities are provided by his Department for correspondents of South African newspapers in the United Kingdom to obtain full access to official information; and to what extent these facilities are arranged on a basis of reciprocity.
§ Mr. Alport
Access to official information is provided by the News Department of the Commonwealth Relations Office for correspondents of South African newspapers in the United Kingdom on exactly the same basis as for other United Kingdom, Commonwealth and foreign correspondents. These facilities are not arranged on a basis of reciprocity.
§ Mr. Stonehouse
I thank the Minister for the answer to the first part of the Question, and hope that these facilities will be continued. Is he aware that there has been some disgraceful treatment of British newspaper correspondents in the Union? In particular, is he aware of the case of Miss Blomberg, who was released from prison on condition that she no longer acted as correspondent for the Daily Herald? Will he make representations to see that this intimidation is brought to an end?
§ Mr. Alport
So far, neither my noble Friend nor I have received complaints on this subject from British correspondents, but if the hon. Member will let me have further details of specific cases I will look into them. It is important that correspondents of all Commonwealth countries should have ready access to all the sources of information that are available with regard to our views in the United Kingdom.