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Question

Volume 229: debated on Monday 29 May 1876

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asked the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether there is any truth in the statement so positively made in the "Standard" of the 26th instant, under the head from our own Correspondent at Constantinople of May 19th—

"That the English Ambassador holds and has expressed the view that it would be a lasting dishonour to Turkey and a complete destruction to her credit if the proposed Scheme for the conversion of her debt, &c., be now dropped by the present Government of Turkey;"
and, if so, seeing that this Scheme is totally unauthorized and entirely disavowed by the English Bondholders—a fact well known to Sir Henry Elliot—whether this alleged statement of the English Ambassador has been made; and, if so, whether it was made by the authority of the Foreign Office, or is merely a personal and unauthorized expression of his own; and, if there is any objection to produce any Correspondence or Communication between the Foreign Office and the English Ambassador upon the subject?

Sir, in answer to the Question of the hon. Member for Newcastle, I have to say that so far as Her Majesty's Government are informed there is no truth whatever in the statement to which his Question refers. Her Majesty's Ambassador at Constantinople has not been authorized or instructed to use the language attributed to him in the Question of the hon. Member; nor do I believe for a moment, under these circumstances, that it is possible for Her Majesty's Ambassador at Constantinople to have used the language which is attributed to him. I need not add that under these circumstances there is no Correspondence at the Foreign Office to be produced.