Under the Geneva convention officers receive from the power in whose custody they are, certain pay and allowances, while other ranks are paid small sums by their own government through the protecting power. Other ranks who work are paid twenty cents a day. I cannot give my hon. friend the rates at the moment.
One of the causes of friction in the past has been the fact that the responsibility of the district officer commanding started at the wire, while the responsibility of the director of internment operations ended at the wire and began in the compound. I know this is a matter of international arrangement, but there seemed to me to be a certain amount of divided authority, that internment operations looked after the prisoners until they escaped, and that immediately they escaped it became the job of the Canadian military authorities and the veterans' guard, under the district officer commanding. I know that matter has been brought to the attention of the minister on previous occasions, but this has been one of the difficulties in connection with internment operations, and there have been cases where the military authorities have not operated inside the compound as they might have, had there not been this dual authority. Has the minister any information as to what is done in other countries? For instance, what do the Americans do in this regard?
I think my hon. friend is mistaken with regard to the dual responsibility. The Department of National Defence, under the new arrangement, has absolute responsibility except in one aspect; namely with regard to external relations, which are handled through the Department of External Affairs. In all other respects the Department of National Defence is responsible. As I pointed out, the director of internment operations is a headquarters staff officer at national defence headquarters. He does not have executive power in the sense of allocating troops here, there and the other place. Those troops are allocated by the adjutant-general to the officer commanding the district in which the particular camp is located. There is no such thing as divided responsibility. The hon. member suggested that the military authorities 'go to the wire and the commissioner of internment operations has jurisdiction inside. That is not correct. The military authorities have complete jurisdiction. The guards are under the Department of National Defence and under the district officer commanding, and are responsible for both interior and exterior
security. The order in council is that the entire responsibility for prisoners of war, enemy aliens and other internees is transferred to the Department of National Defence.
One was passed on November 19, 1942, and another on January 20, 1943. The latter order in council provided for the transferring of refugees as well as prisoners of war. The Department of National Defence became responsible for guarding, discipline, the censorship of mail, the welfare of prisoners, internees and refugees, and the maintenance and operation of all camps. There was what I regarded as some divided responsibility, tout that has been cured.
No. The director of internment operations as an officer of the adjutant-general's branch has the right to go to the camps and reports direct to the adjutant-general. The usual practice is for him to consult with the district officer commanding, since he is in the district. He acts almost in the capacity of an inspector-general in regard to matters of security and the carrying out of the Geneva convention.
What pay is received by officer prisoners? Is it correct that they are paid a percentage of what they would receive if they were serving in their own army? Should they receive a promotion while a prisoner, does that automatically increase the pay which they receive from the Canadian government?
They are paid the amount agreed upon as between the German government, if they are German prisoners, the United Kingdom government and the Canadian government. They may receive a promotion if intimation comes through their government or the protecting power.