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Wednesday, 12 October 1927

Senator Sir WILLIAM GLASGOW (Queensland) (Minister for Defence) [3.5]. - (By leave) - In connexion with the reported massacre of white people in the Solomon Islands, I desire to inform the Senate that on Sunday last the Navy Office received advice from the Admiralty to the effect that a radio telegram had been received from the High Commissioner for the Western Pacific, reporting a massacre at Malaita, in the Solomons, requesting the despatch of a war ship immediately, and asking whether we would despatch one of our cruisers to meet the request. In view of the urgency indicated in the Admiralty telegram, and the fact that the Solomons are included in the Australian Station, the Commonwealth Government arranged at once for the despatch of H.M.A.S. Adelaide from Sydney for the Solomons on Monday, the 10th inst. A cablegram has subsequently been received from the Dominions Office, stating that the request for the despatch ofa cruiser to Malaita has the British Government's full support, and that they are grateful to the Commonwealth Government for the prompt action taken. The British Government has also stated that it is in urgent communication with the High Commissioner for the Western Pacific, and will further advise as to what action it is desired the cruiser Adelaide should take. No further advice has come to hand.

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