Oral Answers to Questions — China (Piracy).

– in the House of Commons on 11th December 1931.

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Photo of Major Frank Heilgers Major Frank Heilgers , Bury St Edmunds


asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has any information regarding the attack by pirates on the British steamship "Hanyang" in Chinese waters on 20th November; and what action has been taken?

Photo of Mr Anthony Eden Mr Anthony Eden , Warwick and Leamington

The Steamship "Hanyang", belonging to the China Navigation Company (a British concern), was pirated about midnight on the 18th of November while on passage from Shanghai to Amoy. The pirates who were on board, presumably in the guise of passengers, left the ship with their booty at Namoa Island near Swatow. His Majesty's Ship "Sterling"' was despatched to Swatow and, after consultation with His Majesty's Consul and the Chinese authorities, embarked a contingent of Chinese troops and sailed for Namoa Island which was raided by the local Chinese Commander and his troops. I am glad to say that this co-operation between His Majesty's Naval Forces and the Chinese authorities has resulted in the recovery of a large part of the goods taken from the "Hanyang" and the capture of thirty pirates by the Chinese. The raid was still in progress at the time of the last telegraphic report. H.M.S. "Sterling" subsequently continued patrolling off the island to support the Chinese action and prevent the escape of pirates by sea.

Photo of Mr David Logan Mr David Logan , Liverpool Scotland

Was there a British crew on board that ship?

Photo of Mr Anthony Eden Mr Anthony Eden , Warwick and Leamington

It was a British ship, but I have no information as to the crew.

Photo of Mr James Maxton Mr James Maxton , Glasgow Bridgeton

I did not quite catch the name of the ship?