Refugee Camp, Reinsehlen

Oral Answers to Questions — Germany – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th October 1949.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Richard Stokes Mr Richard Stokes , Ipswich 12:00 am, 26th October 1949

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he is aware that an evacuation order causing the removal of some 500 inmates from the German refugee camp at Reinsehlen near Soltau out of a total of 1,600 has recently been made; and what are the reasons for this evacuation.

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

Yes, Sir. The British Army of the Rhine, who control Reinsehlen Camp, have, in connection with their redeployment plans, issued a warning order for the removal of 500 refugees from the camp. Attempts are still being made to find some alternative arrangement which would avoid hardship to the refugees, and in the meanwhile no refugees have been moved.

Photo of Mr Richard Stokes Mr Richard Stokes , Ipswich

While I am glad to know nobody has been removed, may I ask my right hon. Friend if he is aware that these people have been there for the best part of three years? Is it not, to say the least of it, unfortunate that, having more or less established themselves, they should, after three years, be uprooted? Will my right hon. Friend do his best to stop it?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

Really, I cannot keep people in camps for ever and ever.

Photo of Mr Richard Stokes Mr Richard Stokes , Ipswich

That is not why they are being moved. Is my right hon. Friend aware that they are being moved for entirely different reasons? I have written to his Department about it.

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

Yes, I know. We need the camp. If people have to be moved because a camp is needed for something else, and if we act in a humane way, and try to find the people alternative accommodation, then I think the removal is quite proper.