Allied Nationals' Property.

Oral Answers to Questions — Russia. – in the House of Commons on 17th May 1922.

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Photo of Sir Clement Kinloch-Cooke Sir Clement Kinloch-Cooke , Plymouth, Devonport

2.

asked the Under-Secretary of State for. Foreign Affairs if his attention has been directed to the judgment of the Court of Appeal on Friday, the 5th instant, in the case of White, Child, and Beney, Limited, v. Eagle Star and British Dominions Insurance Company, Limited, etc., when the Court decided that the birth of the present Soviet Government dates back to the 14th November, 1917, from which date its Acts and Decrees are inviolable in the Courts in this country, in conse- quence of which property belonging rightfully to Allied nationals can be brought to this country and disposed of to other than its rightful owners; and whether any legislative action is contemplated to avoid such complications?

Mr. HARMSWORTH:

The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. No fresh legislation on this subject it at present contemplated.

Photo of Sir Clement Kinloch-Cooke Sir Clement Kinloch-Cooke , Plymouth, Devonport

Then are we to conclude that all acts of 'Bolshevists must now be upheld in this country; that any property so called "nationalised" may be brought here and sold with a legal title of possession? If that be so, does not the trade agreement with Krassin establish a trade in plunder, and is not Great. Britain its licensed mart?

Mr. HARMSWORTH:

My hon. Friend knows that this is a difficult and very important question of international law, and I should be glad to have notice of any further questions in regard to it.