The Swedish scheme, of which I informed the House on 21st April, has now come into operation, and three Swedish ships carrying 15,000 tons of Canadian wheat arrived at Piraeus on 29th August. Two other Swedish ships carrying approximately a further 15,000 tons sailed from Montreal on the same date. This is in addition to the cargo of the s.s. "Hallaren," which reached Piraeus on 21st August with 1,245 tons of flour and 2,264 tons of wheat, all of which had been made available from Allied resources in the Middle East. She had already off-loaded at Smyrna 1,000 tons of wheat for transhipment to the Greek Aegean Islands. The Turkish s.s. "Dulumpinar" also arrived at Piraeus during the last week of August with a cargo of dried fruit and vegetables.
While thanking my hon. Friend for that satisfactory answer, may I ask whether he has any information to show that the Germans are allowing our Greek friends to retain and to consume this food?
The Swedish Commission appointed to administer the scheme arrived in Athens in the last few days of August. Of course, it will be their business to supervise the distribution both of the imported foodstuffs and, to some extent, of Greek domestic produce.
As I have said, the first three of the Swedish ships only arrived on 29th August. My information is that they have not yet been fully unloaded. The House will recollect that an earlier vessel carrying relief to Greece received an Axis safe-conduct but nevertheless was sunk by the Italians on the return journey.