HC Deb 04 April 1990 vol 170 c711W
Mr. Alton

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action he is taking concerning the recent case of the suffocation of a child at birth due to lack of medical facilities at the Whitehead detention centre clinic; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Maude

The Hong Kong authorities have recently completed a thorough investigation of this case.

The medical evidence indicates that the child died at least 24 hours before the onset of labour and probably considerably earlier. The child did not suffocate at birth.

The allegations of inadequate medical facilities are unfounded. Whitehead has a well-equipped clinic but it is the usual practice to transfer women in labour to a nearby hospital as happened in this case.