The Acting Secretary of State to the Japanese Appointed Ambassador (Shidehara)

My Dear Mr. Ambassador: Replying to your inquiry of a few days ago, I beg to inform you that it seems unlikely that the coming International Conference on Communications will pass on the final disposition of the ex-German cables. This Conference will be composed of representatives from practically all the governments of the world and since, according to Part VIII, Annex VII, of the Treaty of Peace with Germany, the ultimate disposition of ex-German cables pertains to the Principal Allied and Associated Governments, it would not seem fitting that the matter should be submitted for discussion to a conference at which many other governments will be represented.

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There will be a preliminary conference composed of the representatives of the Principal Allied and Associated Governments to prepare the agenda for the world wide conference. Whether the question of ex-German cables will be discussed at this preliminary conference is, I presume, a matter for that conference to determine.

Yours very sincerely,

Frank L. Polk