File No. 763.72/3587

The Swiss Minister ( Ritter) to the Secretary of State


Department of German Interests

Mr. Secretary of State: The Political Department, Division of Foreign Affairs, instructs me and I have hereby the honor to notify the Government of the United States as follows:

[Page 184]

The Imperial German Government to-day gave notice of an extension of the submarine blockade according to which it will henceforth and without further notice oppose by every means in its power any navigation whatsoever of the waters of the Arctic Ocean lying east and south of the 75th degree of latitude north, with the exception of the Norwegian territorial waters. Neutral vessels navigating that zone would do so at their risk and peril. Steps, however, have been taken directing that neutral vessels already on their way to ports within the newly prohibited zone or intending to leave those ports should not until the 5th of April be attacked without previous warning.

Be pleased to accept [etc.]

P. Ritter