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France And Turkey

Volume 148: debated on Tuesday 8 November 1921

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asked the Prime Minister whether the terms of the recent agreement between the French Government and the Turkish Nationalist Government of Angora have been communicated to His Majesty's Government; whether they will be laid upon the Table of the House; and what steps have been taken to safeguard opportunities for British enterprise and commerce in the. territories handed over to Turkish control.

The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. The question of the official publication of the agreement is dependent on the permission of the French Government, who are being consulted. The only territory handed over to Turkish control which would not have come under such control under the Treaty of Sevres is a strip of territory along the north Syrian frontier in which no British commercial interests appear to be involved.

Has the hon. Gentleman seen the repeated statements that very valuable exclusive concessions have been promised to French capitalists, and is the situation being watched from the point of view of English capitalists?

My hon. and gallant Friend asked me a question about a particular strip of territory, and I have confined my answer to that.

Does not my question refer to the recent agreement, and is the Government satisfied that British commercial rights are not infringd in the other parts of Turkey under the agreement?

Can the hon. Gentleman say whether he expects the answer of the French Government as to the publication of this Treaty before the rising of the House?

Is not a part of the Bagdad Railway now a part of the frontier in question, and therefore are not British commercial interests affected?