Dr. Russell Thomas:
asked the Secretary of State for War in what manner publication is being made of the names of prisoners of war in Singapore from the lists so far received; whether he will be able to include them in the OFFICIAL REPORT before the Christmas Adjournment; and whether subsequent lists will be published as soon as possible in the Press while the House is not sitting?
The names of prisoners of war who were captured at Singapore are being published in the Press in the usual manner. They are included with the names of prisoners of war captured in other theatres of operations in the lists circulated to the Press from time to time. It has been the considered practice since the outbreak of war to publish casualties, including prisoners of war, without disclosing the theatre of operations in which they occur. It would not be desirable to depart from this rule in connection with prisoners of war captured in Malaya. The publication in the Press of names of prisoners of war will continue, whether the House is sitting or not. I do not think it would be suitable to publish casualties in the OFFICIAL REPORT.
In view of the fact that the Minister has a short list in his possession which he promised to publish, will he assure me that it will be published before Christmas without there being the necessity for constant encouragement and prodding by Members of this House?