Oral Answers to Questions — Dobrudja (Bulgarian Population).

– in the House of Commons at on 20 February 1919.

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Major NEWMAN:

1.

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he is aware that British troops are being employed in the south portion of the Dobrudja to assist Roumanian gendarmes in the task of forcibly converting the Bulgarian population to Roumanian rule, and in suppressing the measure of local government, education, and religion formerly enjoyed by its inhabitants; will he say why the Roumanians are given the rights of conquerors before any decision as to the ultimate destiny of the Dobrudja has been arrived at by the Peace Conference; is he aware of the repugnance felt by officers and men at this duty; and will instructions be sent that the British troops in the district are to hold scales evenly between the Roumanian authorities and the local population pending a decision of the Conference?

Captain GUEST (Joint Patronage Secretary to the Treasury):

My right hon. Friend has asked me to reply. The Roumanians have assumed the task of administering the territory over which they exercised sovereign rights under the Treaty of 1912, and which was wrested from them in 1916 by the Bulgarians and Germans. The British troops are kept in the Dobrudja at the urgent request of our Allies. They are solely concerned with the maintenance of order, and not in any way interfering with the political rights or religious beliefs of the inhabitants.

Major NEWMAN:

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the inhabitants have no rights at all under Roumanian rule if they are Bulgarians?

Captain GUEST:

A very large portion of this question refers to the Foreign Office, and I think he had better address any further questions to them.