§ THE LORD PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL (EARL CURZON OF KEDLESTON)
My Lords, I have an announcement to make which I think will be heard with interest by your Lordships. It is to the following effect. Some days ago General Townshend was liberated in order to inform the British Admiral in command in the Ægean that the Turkish Government asked that negotiations should be opened immediately for an armistice between Turkey and the Allies. A reply was sent that if the Turkish Government sent duly-accredited plenipotentiaries, Vice-Admiral Calthorpe was empowered to inform them of the conditions upon which the Allies would agree to a cessation of hostilities, and to sign an armistice on those conditions on their behalf. The Turkish plenipoteniary arrived at Mudros early this week, and an armistice was signed by Vice-Admiral Calthorpe on behalf of the Allied Governments last night and comes into operation at noon today. It is not possible as yet to publish the full terms of the armistice, but they include a free passage for the Allied fleets to the Black Sea, the occupation of the forts on the Dardanelles and the Bosphorus necessary to secure their passage, and the immediate repatriation of all Allied prisoners of war. Your Lordships will, I am sure, understand that I am not at present in a position to add any further details to this general announcement.