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Russia—The Expulsion Of Jews From St Petersburgh

Volume 283: debated on Saturday 25 August 1883

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asked the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, If he has received information from Her Majesty's Chargé d'Affaires at St. Petersburg, with respect to the expulsion from Russia of a British subject, furnished with an English Foreign Office passport only fourteen days' old, the representative of Messrs. Raphael Tuck, of London, on account of his religion; and, if Her Majesty's Government have taken any steps to induce the Russian Government to extend to Jews the rights stipulated by treaty to all Her Majesty's subjects of whatever denomination?

Yes, Sir; the information which the Secretary of State has received from Her Majesty's Chargé d'Affaires is to the effect that on the 13th instant, Mr. Marcuse called at the British Consulate with his passport endorsed by the police, "British subject, a Jew, forbidden to reside in St. Petersburg." The acting Consul explained the regulations, and offered to go with him to the Prefect of Police to obtain permission for him to remain about three weeks for business purposes. Mr. Marcuse, however, said that he only cared to remain three days, and declined to ask any favour of the Russian authorities. Mr. Marcuse made no further application to the Consulate and none at all to the Embassy. He remained four days at St. Petersburg, and left for Warsaw on the 16th instant. Since the receipt of this information Messrs. Tuck have asked the Secretary of State to obtain for their representative a permit to return to St. Petersburg, and thence to travel to Moscow and Odessa for the purposes of their trade, and Her Majesty's Charge d'Affaires at St. Petersburg has been instructed to inquire whether the Russian Government will give such a permit. Her Majesty's Government have not recently had occasion to make any representation to the Russian Government with regard to British subjects of the Hebrew faith not being permitted to reside at St. Petersburg and certain other places in Russia. An Imperial Commission for the revision of the laws affecting the Jews was appointed in February last. As the Government expect to receive a copy of that Report, they do not in the meantime propose to take any definite action in the matter.