HC Deb 09 October 1945 vol 414 cc47-8W
Mr. Cook

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware of the complaints regarding the detention of Spanish Republicans at the Kirkham Camp; and whether he will take steps to release these men.

Mr. Scollan

asked the Secretary of State for War who was responsible for bringing Spanish citizens who fought on the Republican side in the Spanish civil war to this country as prisoners of war; and why are they still being held in prison camps.

Mr. Lawson

These Spanish nationals were captured as serving members of an enemy para-military organisation and they are correctly held as prisoners of war. The question of their disposal is under urgent consideration.

Mr. Dumpleton

asked the Secretary of State for War the number of Spanish Republicans detained in prisoner-of-war camps in this country; what measure of liberty is allowed to these people; and why they are not now released.

Mr. Lawson

There are now 225 Spanish nationals detained as prisoners of war in the United Kingdom. Their camp has no barbed wire perimeter and they may exercise up to five miles from the camp unescorted. They may talk to members of the public and visit their houses if permitted to do so. They wear green battle-dress but no patches. In answer to the last part of the Question I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply given to-day to my hon. Friends the Members for Dundee (Mr. Cook) and West Renfrew (Mr. Scollan).