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Volume 203: debated on Monday 25 July 1870

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said, he wished to ask the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies, Whether in accordance with the Proclamation of Neutrality, the French ships of War have been requested to withdraw from the Gambia, or whether the advantages of that naval station are to be available for the naval forces of the belligerent Powers?

said, in reply, that he had received no information which led him to believe that there were any Frenchmen-of-war in the Gambia, but the instructions given to the Governors of all our Colonies desired them to prohibit all ships-of-war of either belligerent Power from making use of any port, or roadstead, or water in any of Her Majesty's Colonies or Foreign Possessions, and further authorized them to prevent any men-of-war of a belligerent Power from entering any port, roadstead, or water belonging to Her Majesty, either in the United Kingdom or Her Majesty's Colonies or Foreign Possessions. There was a French ship which went up the Gambia some few weeks ago, but he believed it was to assist some British subjects.