Oral Answers to Questions — Near East (Christian Minorities).

– in the House of Commons on 10th May 1922.

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Photo of Mr T.P. O'Connor Mr T.P. O'Connor , Liverpool Scotland

56.

asked the Lord Privy Seal whether his attention has been called to the Report of Major Yowell, the American relief worker in the Near East and the director of the Kharput unit, in which he describes the treatment of the Christians by the Turks in the Kharput district; whether he has any official information showing that out of 30,000 Greek deportees 5,000 died before reaching Kharput, and another 5,000 died at Kharput or to the west thereof, the children of the dying deportees being left without assistance, and the women and girl refugees being taken by the Turks to use for their own purposes; and whether effective means will at once be taken by the Allies to protect the Christian minorities in Turkey?

Mr. CHAMBERLAIN:

I have seen the account referred to, and His Majesty's High Commissioner at Constantinople has been instructed to furnish a Report on the subject. All the information in the possession of His Majesty's Government is, in general, corroborative of the truth of Major Yowell's statements. The Allies are, unfortunately, not at present in a position to take any effective measures to protect the minorities in territory under Kemalist control, but guarantees for the safety of all minorities form an integral part of the peace settlement which they have proposed.