§ LORD CHELMSFORD
said, that during the last Session of Parliament he had often called the attention of their Lordships to the condition of the British Consul and the British subjects imprisoned in Abyssinia, in the hope that he might obtain some definite information upon the subject. He had not, however, fully succeeded in his object, and he now asked the noble Earl the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether he had any intelligence to communicate respecting the matter? He particularly desired to be informed as to the last account that had been received of the condition in which 27 the prisoners were; whether Mr. Rassam had advanced at all in the mission -which was intrusted to him, and which had been so long in hand; and whether any further efforts had been made during the long interval which had elapsed since Mr. Rassam set out to secure the liberation of those prisoners. As he had not given notice of his intention to ask the Question, but merely mentioned the matter to the noble Earl a few minutes before, he should not press for a definite answer at present.