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----...---parliament in Ikief.…


parliament in Ikief. C -✓ THURSDAY, APRIL 1ST. HOUSE OF COMMONS. Mr. T. M. Healy asked the Home Secretary whether he was aware that the large English gas companies were now making large quanti- ties of water gas, and turning it into the mains with coal gas, so that some cases of gas poison- ing had already occurred, and whether any weans would be taken to protect the public against the admixture of this most poisonous substance with ceal gas. Sir M. White Ridley said he was not aware that cases of gas poisoning had occurred from the cause suggested. If Mr. Healy would be good enough to favour him with any evidence he would cause inquiry to be made In reply to Mr. MacNeill, Mr. Brodrick said it was a fact that a sub-lieutenant of the King's oyal Rifles, now stationed at Aldershot, on seeing an Irish soldier with a shamrock in his cap on St. Patrick's Day, ordered him to take 'that dirty bit of greenstuff' out of his cap; and on the soldier telHng him that Irish sol- diers were allowed to wear the shamrock on t. Patrick's Day, ordered him to be confined in the guard-room, and that the soldier was subsequently punished with seven days' im- prisonment and hard labour. The late Mr. Stanhope, when dealing with the question, stated that the sanction of the commanding officer must first be obtained for the wearing of emblems or any addition to the uniform, and ^hac was not done by the private in question. The General commanding at Aldershot was in- vestigating the circumstances of this case. In reply to Colonel Mellor, Sir M. White Ridley said his inquiry into the alleged dis- missal of three of the workpeople employed by 'he East Lancashire Paper Mill Company for giving evidence in support of the case of an- other workman who recovered 9-108 damages for the loss of a hand was not yet complete. Mr. Chamberlain, answering Mr. W. Allan, said that Sir F. Carrington, like other army officers, drew a special field allowance from the funds of the British South Africa Company, but he was unable to state the amount. Sir F. Carrington had furnished a general report on the operations in Rhodesia, but he did not think there would be any advantage in presen- ting it to Parliament. In reply to Mr. J. Ellis, Mr. A. J. Balfour said his hope was that after a morning sitting on Tuesday week, the 13th, the House would adjourn. He hoped it would not be necessary to come back before the Monday following Easter Monday. The Budget he informed Mr. T. M. Healy, would probably be taken either on the Thursday after the House met or on the Monday following. At the second reading stage of the Budget Bill it would be possible to discuss the financial relations question, though he could not state how long he could allow the debate to proceed. Mr. J. Morley asked the Under Foreign Sec- retary whether his attention had been called to the report in the 'Standard' from Canea that the Camperdown having shelled the forces of the insurgents ac a distance of about four miles, and the insurgent flag having been lowered and the Christians being in full retreat, the Turkish soldiers sallied out from the forts and estab- lished themselves in the insurgent positions, hoisting the Ottoman flag; that until the Cam- perdown took to her heavy shells the insurgents rather gained ground than lost; and whether it was in accordance with the policy of the Go- vernment that Turkish troops should be em ployed under the cover of British guns in order to hoist the Ottoman Mag as a symbol of Turk- ish rule in Crete. Mr. Curzon replied that the Government had as yet received no information about the inci- dents in question. He did not gather, however, from the report in question, either that Turk- ish troops were employed under cover of British guns for an attack on the insurgents, or that the Ottoman flag was hoisted as the symbol of Turkish rule in Crete. Asked by Mr. MacNeill whether the Cretan insurgent chiefs who were summoned under a flag of truce to the village outside Retimo by the consuls for the purpose of having the mean ing of the promised autonomy explained to them were fired at three times by the Turkish soldiers, Mr. Curzon said that n the 29th the Russian Consul invited the insurgents to meet him and the commander of the Russian troops. Fifty Christians came from the village of Azi- popoulo and sent a deputation of eight to the appointed place, and although they were carrying a white flag they were fired on by the Turkish troops. The Christians abstained from carrying a white flag they were fired on by the Turkish troops. The Christians abstained from firing, but as the Turks/continued, the insur gents came down, and fighcing continued till evening. The Russian Consul made strong re- monstrances to the Governor, stating that he would report his want of good faith. He sub- sequently succeeded in interviewing the insur- gents, and they were reported to have refused autonomy and insisted upon union with Greece. The Government, Mr. Curzon continued, were taking every step in their power to accelerate the withdrawal of the Turkish troops, though it must be clear that until the Powers were in a position to replace the garrisons withdrawn, which they were endeavouring by the despatch of additional reinforcements to do, they were not justified in exposing to the risk of success- ful attack the refugee population in the seaport towns. Mr. MacNeill asked for and obtained leave to move the adjournment of the House in order to call attention to the absence from the United Kingdom of the Prime Minister and Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and his consequent inability to take counsel personally with his colleagues in the Cabinet and to communicate intelligence to Parliament personally as to the present critical condition of the Eastern Ques- tion and the relations of f this country with foreign Powers. Mr. H. Lewis formally seconded the motion, which was at once put and negatived without a division. The Military Works (Money) Bill was read a third time, and the Public Health (Scotland) Bill was read a second time and referred to the Standing Committee on Law. The Public Offices (Whitehall) Site Bill, by which the Government propose to acquire a site for the new War Offiee buildings, was read a second time and referred to a Select Commit- tee. The Kingstown Harbour Roads Transfer Bill was read a second time, and was then with- drawn.









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