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[The Editor, whilst grateful to all correspondents who may be kind enough to furnish him with information, desires to state that he is not responsible for the views stated by them, nor for quotations which may be inserted from other journals. The object of the journal is to spread information, and articles are necessarily quoted which may contain views or statements for which their authors can alone be held responsible.]
economy, we publish the Annual Annual Report. Report of our Society along with the April issue of the
Reporter, instead of separately. The report is somewhat briefer than usual, but contains the usual yearly cash account and list of subscribers.
The President and Secretaries visited Edinburgh and The Com
Glasgow in February and met the members of the Committees in Scotland.
mittees in each of those cities to report on the Society's
work and confer on the more pressing problems which confront it. In both places much interest and sympathy was expressed in the work which we are doing, especially upon the momentous issues presented by the case relating to the native lands of Southern Rhodesia.
Between the two meetings in Edinburgh and Glasgow, Sir Victor Buxton and Mr. Harris attended a Laymen's Missionary Conference held at Crieff for the week-end, when each of them had the opportunity of speaking on Christian responsibility of Empire, and gained not a little new interest, and, it is hoped, practical support for our work.
The Scotch Committees have also taken much interest in the Committee for the welfare of Africans in France, which has been shown by the collection of considerable sums for the support of this work.
The German Colonies and International Control. THE Society hailed with much satisfaction the Prime Minister's speech in Parliament at the end of last year reiterating his views as to the settlement of colonial territories to be transferred after the war, and the necessity of consulting the native inhabitants. He said
“The Peace Congress shall settle it, but it must settle it upon the principle of respecting the desires of the people themselves. That we laid down then, and that we stand by now.” A resolution was passed at the Committee in January expressing
warm appreciation of the declaration, and copies were sent to Mr. Lloyd George and to the Secretary of State for the Colonies. It was decided also to ask for a deputation to be received by the Foreign Secretary on this subject, following the lines set forth in the Society's memorial of January 1917,' and the following correspondence has taken place :
DENISON HOUSE, S.W.
January 5, 1918. TO THE Rt. Hox. A. J. BALFOUR, M.P., etc. Sir,
Following upon our communication of January 22 last, and previous correspondence with the Foreign Office, we beg to inform you that the Society has held two public conferences upon the two questions :-(1) The Future of the German Colonies, (2)“ International Control ” in tropical and semi-tropical regions.
At the first Conference the following resolution was carried unanimously :
' That in any reconstruction of Africa which may result from this War, the interests of the native inhabitants and also their wishes in as far as those wishes can be clearly ascertained, should be recognized as among the principal factors upon which the decision of their destiny should be based.”
We have been very glad to note that the Prime Minister has more than once clearly laid it down as a principle that in the settlement of such territories the wishes of the inhabitants must be respected, and at a meeting of the General Committee of the Society, on the 3rd instant, the following resolution was passed :
“That the Committee of the Anti-Slavery and Aborigines Protection Society begs to place on record its warm appreciation of the declarations made by the Prime Minister that British War Aims in regard to the settlement of any transferred Colonial Territory must include as the 'dominant factor' the wishes, the desires and the interests of the inhabitants.
That a copy of this resolution be sent to the Prime Minister, and to the Secretaries of State for Foreign and Colonial Affairs."
At the second Conference opinion was not unanimous but certain principles found general acceptance. These include the following :--That existing international obligations towards native races require levelling up, remodelling and extending both in regard to their character and to the territories to which they apply; that any form of control involving international responsibility for executive functions would only lead to administrative confusion; that inter-colonial questions, such as those relating to labour, migration, drink traffic, diseases, native rights to land, etc., are fit subjects for consideration and control by the co-operative agency of all European colonizing Powers, but that to be effective it is imperative that
Reporter Vol. 7, No. 1, p. 3.