Skip to main content

Japan (Reparations And Restitution Problems)

Volume 437: debated on Wednesday 7 May 1947

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.


asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what proportion of Japanese industrial equipment and material removed, or to be removed, as reparations had originally been obtained by seizure or looting from other nations; what action he proposes to take to see that such property or its equivalent value is returned to its owners; and if he will impress upon General MacArthur the need for admitting to Japan those who have such claims, in order to pursue their legitimate inquiries.

Within the framework of policy decisions of the Far Eastern Commission, the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers is now engaged in designating Japanese industrial facilities for removal as reparations, but no removals have yet been made. General MacArthur has invited all Governments represented on the Far Eastern Commission to send official missions to Tokyo to deal with him on problems of reparations, restitution and restoration. In restitution matters, the missions' functions are to inspect property for purposes of identification, to present claims for looted goods, to request that searches be made for missing items believed to be in Japan, to accept title to goods on behalf of their Governments and to arrange for the transportation of such property from Japan. The Representatives who will act on behalf of the United Kingdom, Burma and the Colonies are now expected to arrive in Japan before the end of May. One of their main tasks will, of course, be to secure the restitution of British property looted by the Japanese and to ensure that it is not made available for reparations. If cases arise where, for any reason, identifiable loot found in Japan cannot be returned, claims for compensation will be made.