CONDITIONS AT DOUGLAS,
The following was -cabled from London to the Sydney ‘ Sun' on December 30 The Official Press Bureau states that Mr Chandler Hale, a member of the stall of the United States Embassy, in reporting to the Foreign Office upon the alien camp at Douglas, in the File nf Man, where 2,000 Germans and 1,300 Austrians arc interned, said that the camps are somewhat crowded. The authorities will transfer 1,000 prisoners to Peel, on the other .side of the island, when the accommodation is ready. Five hundred prisoners are quartered in two large comfortable buildings. Each man has a bunk with a mattress and three blankets. Huts are being erected for the rest of the prisoners, who are now living in tents with a raised wooden flooring. The dietary is excellent. For breakfast there are porridge, syrup, tea, sugar, milk, half a pound of bread and margarine; ami for dinner, bread, potatoes, meat, and a green vegetable. The dining room has a glass roof, is steam healed, is fitted with electric light, and will accommodate 1,600. There are ample lavatory facilities, and a hot and cold water service. Compared with other camps, the conditions are very good. It is alleged that a riot commenced because bad potatoes were served up. The authorities admit that one shipment was worm-eaten, but it was rejected after a few days. On November 18 the men declared a hunger strike at dinner time. On the 19th they ate their dinner without making any complaints, but immediately after the guards had withdrawn from the moms the prisoners suddenly began to break up the tables, chairs, crockery, in fact, everything on which they could lay their hands. Upon the guards making their reappearance, the rioters charged them, armed with table legs and chairs. The guard ■ to quell the outbreak by firing : < m the air, but without effect. I ‘ .he soldiers were compelled, in self-protection, to fire among the crowd, the volley killing four Germans and one Austrian, and wounding 19 others, “1 talked freely with the wounded,” says Mr Hale, “ and gathered that the prisoners were in the wrong, and had only themselves to blame. One of the most intelligent of the Germans said that a considerable percentage of the prisoners were a bad lot. gathered in from East End of London, and including several agitators, who were preaching discontent and insubordination. This was really the direct cause of the trouble. I „ have nothing hut commendation for the entire organisation ramp, and for the kindly treatment of the prisoners by the commandant and his subordinates.”
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ALIEN PRISONERS, Evening Star, Issue 15693, 6 January 1915
ALIEN PRISONERS Evening Star, Issue 15693, 6 January 1915
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