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Gilbert Islands

Volume 934: debated on Thursday 30 June 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) pursuant to the answer given to the hon. Member for Essex, South-East, Official Report, 20th June, column 325, whether the fact that from 1908 Ocean Island was the administrative headquarters of the Gilbert Islands Pro- tectorate meant at any time that it was part of the Protectorae;(2) whether, further to the Written Answer given to the hon. Member for Essex, South-East, on 20th June last about the way Ocean Island was brought into the administration of the Gilbert Islands, the precedents indicate that the extension of Queen's Regulations on the location of administrative headquarters has no bearing on territorial boundaries.

The establishment of the administrative headquarters of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands Protectorate on Ocean Island would not by itself have been conclusive of the status of Ocean Island.By proclamation dated 28th November 1900, the Queen's Regulations applicable to the Gilbert and Ellice Islands Protectorate were extended to Ocean Island and Ocean Island was included within the jurisdiction of the Resident Commissioner for the Protectorate. Accordingly from that date Ocean Island, which was already a British possession, was administered as part of the protectorate. I think that these matters would be regarded as having some bearing on territorial boundaries.