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British Police Mission

Volume 440: debated on Wednesday 23 July 1947

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, whether, in view of the action taken by the Greek Government in arresting, without charge, thousands of trade unionists, Socialists and Communists, he will now withdraw the British Police Mission.

In that case, will the Foreign Secretary say whether he is satisfied that the Police Mission which we sent over to Greece is there for a useful purpose or merely in order to ensure the unwarranted arrest of Socialist and Communist trade unionists?

Does the right hon. Gentleman think that this present attack on the Left and the working-class in Greece is a useful purpose?

I beg the hon. Gentleman's pardon, perhaps he will allow me to answer the question—sets out to destroy the elected authority of the State, the elected authority of the State is entitled to protect itself.

Is my right hon. Friend aware that, in Greece, anybody who opposes the Government is apparently classified as a Communist, and that this also ha:; the appearance of a Nazi doctrine to which exception has been taken this afternoon?

I am not expressing a view whether the Greek Government are right or wrong; I am expressing the view that the Police Mission is out there doing its duty. On the other hand, when I was asked a question as to this attack on the State, I gave an answer, and I limited it to the Communist Party.