§ 43. Mr. ALDEN
asked the hon. Member for Sheffield (Central Division) whether he will state the number of British prisoners now in the hands of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Turkey, respectively; what attempts are being made to alleviate the sufferings of these men, apart from the threat of reprisals on the part of the British Government; and what action Bulgaria has taken with regard to our prisoners?
I am informed that the number of British officers (including officers of the Dominion Forces and the Royal Navy) now in captivity in Germany 428 is 5,362, and of other ranks 142,987. In addition to these there are two Indian officers and 513 other ranks. In Austria there are twenty-eight officers and 242 other ranks. In Turkey 430 British officers and 217 Indian officers, and 2,381 British other ranks, and 6,569 Indian other ranks.
With regard to the second part of the question, it is of course impossible within the limits of an answer to a Parliamentary question to give particulars of the steps which are being taken every day by a number of agencies for the alleviation of the sufferings of these men, but if my hon. Friend will communicate with me I shall be glad to give him all the information in my possession.
As regards the last part of the question, our Armistice with Bulgaria provides for the handing over of all prisoners of war, and the General Officer in Command at Salonika has been asked to send early information on this subject.
§ 54. General CROFT
asked the Prime Minister if he can now state whether an early date can be granted to discuss the whole question of British prisoners of war in Germany?
§ Mr. BONAR LAW
If there is a general desire for this discussion, I shall be glad to arrange for it. If the hon. and gallant Member will repeat his question on Thursday, I hope to be in a position to give him a definite reply.