HL Deb 28 July 1924 vol 58 cc1027-8

My Lords, I desire to ask the Lord President of the Council a question of which I have given him private notice—whether he is in a position to add anything to the statement he made in this House on Thursday last with regard to the situation in Brazil.


My Lords, I regret to inform the noble Earl that since the statement which I made on July 24 the news which we have received from His Majesty's Ambassador in Brazil is less satisfactory. He says that there is still strong feeling at Sao Paulo in favour of the rebels, who are very determined; that there is a shortage of flour; that a large part of the population has already left the City; and that the foreign banks are carefully guarded. The Minister of War has published an appeal to the people of Sao Paulo to leave the town in order to escape the effects of the military operations which will shortly be carried out. The President of the State of Sao Paulo has agreed to facilitate the departure of British subjects. There are, as yet, no casualties amongst British subjects. The Brazilian Government news is that their troops have advanced, and by occupying another line of railway are cutting off provisions so that their position is now very favourable.

His Majesty's Ambassador has enquired of the President of Brazil what measures are being taken to facilitate the departure of the population of Sao Paulo and to provide for their necessities, and whether the Brazilian Government proposes to indemnify all losses if the City is destroyed. Sir John Tilley was informed by the President's secretary that no immediate bombardment was intended and that it was hoped that it would not be necessary. He has been unable to obtain an answer with regard to the question of compensation for damage. His Majesty's Ambassador is taking steps to provide relief or the removal of refugees from Santos, if necessary. He reports that Rio de Janeiro is quiet but that there is dissatisfaction in business circles. A telegram from His Majesty's Consul-General at Rio de Janeiro states that communication between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo is interrupted but that the latest reports were to the effect that there were no casualties among the British colony and that the foreign representatives chiefly interested are addressing a collective Note to the President on the subject of the care of foreign subjects leaving Sao Paulo and the responsibility of the Brazilian Government for their lives and property. His Majesty's ship "Curlew" has been instructed to proceed to Brazil at once from Trinidad.


I am much obliged to the noble Lord for his answer.