HC Deb 17 September 1931 vol 256 c1044W

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he can now make a further statement as to the negotiations between His Majesty's Minister to China and the Nanking Chinese Government regarding the disappearance of Mr. John Thorburn last June; and, seeing that, since the representations were made to Marshal Chiang Kai-shek regarding Mr. Thorburn, the European secretary of the Pan-Pacific Trade Union and his wife have been handed over to the Chinese military authorities by the authorities of the international settlement at Shanghai for court-martial on the charge of having carried on Communist propaganda, whether measures will be taken to safeguard the lives of these Europeans?

Captain EDEN

The report of the new inquiry into the disappearance of Mr. John Thorburn has not vet been received, and His Majesty's Minister has been instructed to press the Chinese authorities to expedite it. With regard to the second part of the question, there could be no justification for the intervention of His Majesty's Government on behalf of the persons referred to since, though they have had many aliases, they are at all events not British subjects.

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