HC Deb 18 October 1945 vol 414 c1550W
Viscount Corvedale

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will cause inquiry to be made into the unsatisfactory functioning of U.N.R.R.A. in Greece, whereby articles of Allied military equipment are for sale in the local black markets and the troops are short of necessary clothing.

Mr. McNeil

I cannot accept the assumption in the first part of my hon. Friend's Question that U.N.R.R.A. is functioning in Greece in a unsatisfactory manner. On the contrary, my information is that, in spite of initial difficulties, it has done, and is doing, an excellent job of work, which is of vital importance to the restoration and prosperity of Greece. As regard the particular instance quoted by my hon. Friend, if the articles are of Allied military equipment, it does not follow that they passed through U.N.R.R.A.'s hands. Certain articles of surplus military equipment have from time to time been handed over to, or purchased by U.N.R.R.A. for use as relief supplies, and I am aware that there have been complaints from time to time of such supplies being offered for sale in local markets, sometimes in order to purchase local supplies which cannot otherwise be afforded. Every endeavour is made to check this practice, but it is clearly not practicable for U.N.R.R.A. entirely to prevent the occasional re-sale of its supplies once they have been distributed.