The MARQUESS of WESTMEATH
, seeing a Member of Her Majesty's Government opposite, wished to call the noble Lord's attention to the very fearful state of affairs now existing in the north of Ireland. Her Majesty's Government were by that time aware of the termination of the trials which had taken place in pursuance of a Special Commission, and he thought they were rather in a dilemma with regard to the result. Because either the issuing of the Special Commission, and the steps taken to put those individuals on their trial—and who were not found guilty—was a mistake altogether, or the representation made that the powers of the existing law would be sufficient for the suppression of crime and outrage, were not warranted by the state of the facts. He wished to know whether her Majesty's Government meant to take any new view of the subject; because either these individuals had been improperly brought to trial, or a strengthening of the existing powers was absolutely necessary.
§ EARL GREY
said, that he understood the noble Lord's question, whether, in consequence of the failure of convictions before the Special Commission, the Government proposed to introduce any measure for the alteration of the law. He could only say that the proceedings of that Special Commission had but just been furnished to him, and since then he had had no opportunity of communicating with the Secretary of State for the Home Department, and it was not possible therefore that any decision could be come to as yet.