File No. 763.72112/2001

The Netherland Minister (Van Rappard) to the Secretary of State

No. 3723]

Mr. Secretary of State: The Government of Her Majesty the Queen has protested to the French and English Governments against the new decrees annulling the application of Article 57 of the Declaration of London.

The Dutch Government has specially protested to the British Government against the seizure of the vessel Hamborn, recently taken to Halifax at the same time as the American vessel Hocking. The Netherland Government has taken the position that, not only under the Declaration of London, but also under the established law of nations, the flag granted by a sovereign state determines the nationality of the ship in time of war as in time of peace and places it under the protection of that state, save in the case of transfer of the flag.

In asking me to bring the foregoing to your excellency’s knowledge, my Government directs me to report by telegraph the reception which your excellency is pleased to accord to this communication.

I shall, therefore, be very grateful to your excellency, if you will kindly enable me to comply with the wish expressed by Jonkheer Loudon by acquainting me with the attitude of the United States Government with respect to the case of the Hocking which was seized under the same conditions as the above-mentioned Dutch ship Hamborn.

I avail myself [etc.]

W. L. F. C. van Rappard