Refugees from Egypt (Visas)

Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 20th December 1956.

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Photo of Sir Barnett Stross Sir Barnett Stross , Stoke-on-Trent Central 12:00 am, 20th December 1956

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many visas have been issued to non-British subjects who have been expelled from Egypt; and how many British subjects have already reached Britain.

Photo of Mr Gwilym Lloyd George Mr Gwilym Lloyd George , Newcastle upon Tyne North

The Swiss authorities, acting as protecting Power, have issued 51 visas to foreigners in Egypt to come to the United Kingdom. No precise figures are available of the number of British subjects who have arrived from Egypt, but such records as it has been possible to make show that nearly 2,000 British refugees from Egypt are now in the United Kingdom.

Photo of Sir Barnett Stross Sir Barnett Stross , Stoke-on-Trent Central

Can the right hon. and gallant Gentleman say what conditions, if any, have to be subscribed to in order to allow non-British subjects to enter the country? Are they allowed if, for example, they have relatives or friends here who can give some warranty that they will care for them financially when they come?

Photo of Mr Gwilym Lloyd George Mr Gwilym Lloyd George , Newcastle upon Tyne North

Very sympathetic consideration is given in the case of those who have relatives here, and of others who have not. About 40 have been allowed to come in without visas.

Photo of Mr Barnett Janner Mr Barnett Janner , Leicester North West

I appreciate the interest which the right hon. and gallant Gentleman is taking in these cases. Will he continue this policy with a view to giving accommodation to those who come here from Egypt in future? He knows that barbaric treatment is being meted out by Egypt to people, including those who have no nationality. Will he also see to it that in those cases where Egyptians are insisting upon men of this description leaving other countries sympathetic consideration is given to their coming and remaining here?

Photo of Mr Gwilym Lloyd George Mr Gwilym Lloyd George , Newcastle upon Tyne North

I am not quite clear what the hon. Member means by Egyptians insisting upon them leaving other countries. About 2,000 British refugees have come in from Egypt and about 1,400 of them are accommodated in hostels.

Photo of Mr Barnett Janner Mr Barnett Janner , Leicester North West

Perhaps I did not make myself clear. Is the right hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that in the Sudan, for example, the Sudanese are asking Jewish Egyptian subjects to leave the Sudan, at the instigation of Egypt? I assume that what the right hon. and gallant Gentleman has said about receiving the refugees will apply to those who come from countries other than Egypt.

Photo of Mr Gwilym Lloyd George Mr Gwilym Lloyd George , Newcastle upon Tyne North

Yes. I now follow what the hon. Gentleman means. I shall certainly give sympatheic consideration to that point.