File No. 841.801/51
The Ambassador in Great Britain (Page) to the Secretary of State
[Received 5 p. m.]
2638. Your 1908, 27th ultimo. I am in receipt of a note from Sir Edward Grey in reply to my representations based on the Department’s instructions which reads as follows:
I have the honour to inform your excellency in reply that in principle His Majesty’s Government would desire that neutral vessels passing northabout from one neutral port to another should sail with the knowledge and consent of the government of the country whose flag they fly and should follow a track similar as far as possible to that used by vessels sailing from British ports. The difficulty of ensuring this is however so considerable and the responsibility of His Majesty’s Government in the matter is so slight that no endeavour is being made in practice to secure any such limitation of sailings.