763.72119/10097: Telegram

The Ambassador in France ( Wallace ) to the Secretary of State

1348. Mission. Fifty-fifth meeting of Conference of Ambassadors was held Wednesday morning, June 30, Cambon presiding.

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11. Conference had before it a memorandum from British Delegation concerning application of protocol signed in connection with convention on traffic in arms at Saint Germain on September 10 last. Memorandum contained following paragraph:

“Towards the commencement of the present year the British Parliament [Government] was informed by the Government of the United States that latter had no authority while awaiting the ratification of the Convention on Traffic in Arms to prevent private firms in the United States from shipping arms, et cetera, to non-signatory states. Now it must be noted that with the exception of Venezuela no neutral government has guaranteed that it would sign the convention when the opportunity was presented and that in consequence the export dealers of the United Kingdom and [of] other principal signatory states are placed in an extremely disadvantageous situation in comparison with the merchants of the United States.”

Memorandum then proposed that protocol be considered as applying solely to stipulations of the convention which refer to the prohibited zones specified in article 6 thereof. Derby61 stated that as his Government considered that other nations do not adhere to this protocol it did not intend to do so either, except as regards said prohibited zones. Cachi from [Cambon of?] France instructed to notify Conference of this attitude. It was decided to request views of Governments as to British proposal concerning application of protocol.

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  1. Lord Derby, British Ambassador to France.