HC Deb 01 August 1944 vol 402 cc1182-3W
Mr. Robertson

asked the Secretary of State for War if he has considered the letter from a sapper in the R.E.'s, which has been brought to his notice, alleging that skilled and experienced Engineers are continuously employed digging latrines for Italian prisoners of war; and will he take immediate steps to compel the Italians to deal with their own sanitation and allow British R.E.'s to fulfil tasks more in keeping with the traditions of their corps.

Sir J. Grigg

The duties of the Royal Engineers include the planning and construction of prisoner of war camps. Prisoner of war labour is used if it is available and in the particular case to which the hon. Member has drawn my attention I assume that it was not available. I am, however, making inquiries.

Mr. Robertson

asked the Secretary of State for War if he has inquired into the strike of Italian prisoners in Lincolnshire because farmers were unable to give them a hot lunch at their work in the fields; is he aware that these prisoners refused the same sandwich ration as their British guards; and what action he is taking to deal with the prisoners concerned.

Sir J. Grigg

This strike originated in a demand by the prisoners for the return of their camp leader who had been transferred elsewhere. They were sentenced to 28 days' detention and 15 days on a punishment diet.

Sir W. Edge

asked the Secretary of State for War the average daily menu of Italian prisoners of war in rural areas.

Sir J. Grigg

In accordance with the provisions of the Geneva Convention, Italian prisoners of war in prisoner of war camps receive the following daily rations:

Meat, fresh or frozen 2 4/7
Margarine 6/7
Cooking fat (lard or dripping) 2/7
Bacon 4/7
Bread 10
Flour 2
Rice 3/7
Catmeal 1 6/7
Offal or sausage, beef 1 5/7
Cheese 3/7
Cake 4/7
Jam 4/7
Dried fruit 6/7
Coffee 1 ½
Sugar 1 1/7
Milk, condensed (British or Dominion) 3
Potatoes 32
Dried vegetables 4/7
Fresh vegetables 5 5/7
Salt 3/8

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