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AUCKLAND, December 8. With referenco to the cablegram from Sydney regarding tho escape of the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau, the Primo Minister stated that tho New Zealand Government did not hurry away the Expeditionary Furee. He said : " Weeent them on the date and with tho convoy fixed by- tho Admiralty. Tho Admiralty, and not the New Zealand Government,''appointed tho later convoy, including the battle-cruiser Australia, which met tho first convoy at Noumea and proceeded thonco to Samoa. The New Zealand Government requested tho Imperial Government to satisfy us oi the sulliciency of tho convoy to ensure the safety of the New Zealand troops, but wo did not mako any request for tho sorvice, as a convoy or otherwise, of the Australia or of any vessel of the Australian squadron. \Vhilo I think it necessary to correct the etatement, I need hardly say wo highly appreciate tho protection afforded to New Zealand by tho vessels of tho Australian squadron during the recent very serious crisis." _

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STOP PRESS ITEMS., Issue 15670, 8 December 1914

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STOP PRESS ITEMS. Issue 15670, 8 December 1914

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