Orders of the Day — Greece (Situation)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 16th April 1948.

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Mr. McNeil:

I agree; the frontier is about 1000 kilometres, I believe. I would not attempt to match my opinion against the military opinion of the hon. Gentle- man, but I am informed that the figures which he suggested would scarcely meet the position. I want to say that we have recently seen an extension of the Greek Forces, as they have had authority for an additional 10,000 men, which will bring their strength up to 147,000. In addition, there is authority for the creation of 100 battalions of a national defence character, and my hon. Friend can be assured that we have noted the point he made about small arms. No one will pretend that they will have a simple job, nor can anyone be confident of their success, but in recent weeks there has been an indication that they are having rather more success. However difficult their task, they can be assured that every one concerned with the position is anxious to see that the electors and the representative Government hold their rights, and the peoples of all Western countries will be behind the effort which these big forces are about to develop in the next few months against these guerillas who are not representative of the Greek people, not resting upon the Greek people, and do not derive their supplies or their forces from the Greek people. The latter can be assured that such aid as His Majesty's Government can legally give under the terms of our international obligations will be given to the Greek Forces.