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Royal Commission On Capital Punishment

Volume 498: debated on Thursday 27 March 1952

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will recommend an alteration in the terms of reference of the Royal Commission on Capital Punishment which will enable it to publish an interim report or reports.

The terms of reference expressly provide that the Royal Commission or any four or more members thereof may report from time to time if they judge it expedient so to do. I understand that the Royal Commission hope to present their report this summer.

Does the right hon. and learned Gentleman remember agreeing with me recently in the House that this is a matter of life and death, and that any differences which may be holding up the report should be resolved forthwith, or that, alternatively, separate reports ought to be issued in the public interest?

I do not think it would be desirable to dictate to those who are serving on the Royal Commission. We hope to get the report very soon and then we shall be able to discuss it.