Radio Station, Cyprus (Propaganda)

Oral Answers to Questions — Palestine – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 16th June 1948.

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Photo of Mr Philip Piratin Mr Philip Piratin , Stepney Mile End 12:00 am, 16th June 1948

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he is aware that the radio station in Cyprus, run by the Foreign Office Information Department, has been encouraging the Arabs in their invasion of Palestine; that on 28th May it called on the Arabs to be ready to occupy Haifa; and whether he will make a statement.

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

I have seen a monitoring report of a broadcast by the Near East Arabic Broadcasting Service speculating on possible Arab military activity. This station is not run by the Foreign Office Information Department, nor has the Governor of Cpyrus any responsibility for it.

Photo of Mr Philip Piratin Mr Philip Piratin , Stepney Mile End

Can the Foreign Secretary say whether this radio station broadcasts announcements of this kind?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

I have already said I have seen a monitoring report of what it broadcast, but that is not under my control.

Photo of Mr Philip Piratin Mr Philip Piratin , Stepney Mile End

Does that report confirm these particular statements?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

I saw one statement which I thought was rather unwise, but then there are a lot more broadcasts which I think are equally unwise.

Photo of Sir Norman Hulbert Sir Norman Hulbert , Stockport

Who operates this station?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

It is operated by a body of people connected with the Arabs.

Photo of Sir Kenneth Pickthorn Sir Kenneth Pickthorn , Cambridge University

Can the Foreign Secretary tell us by whom it is licensed and what is the juridical nature of this body?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

It operated in Palestine, and for technical reasons it was removed to Cyprus. The people who have been operating are the same people who operated it for years in Palestine.

Photo of Mr Philip Piratin Mr Philip Piratin , Stepney Mile End

I give notice that I will put down a Question to the Secretary of State for the Colonies asking why this station is in Cyprus.