The Minister in Switzerland (Gary) to the Acting Secretary of State

No. 402

Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Department’s cable of November 24/6 p.m.77 sent to Ohristiania, forwarded to us for action, in which the Department states that it would welcome an expression from Dr. Nansen as to the desirability of his continued efforts to secure further releases of Americans now held in Russia.

I immediately acquainted Dr. Nansen who is in Geneva with the substance of the Department’s telegram and I am this morning in receipt of a reply from him, a copy in translation of which I am enclosing herewith.

I have [etc.]

Hampson Gary

Dr. Fridtjof Nansen to the Minister in Switzerland (Gary)

Mr. Minister: In reply to your letter of the 2nd, I have the honor to inform you that I am working unceasingly to obtain the liberation of American citizens who are still held prisoners in Russia. I believe it is preferable for the moment not to insist too much upon [Page 687] the return of these prisoners, for the reason that the Soviet Government might believe that we attach a very great importance to these latter and would be tempted then to make use of it for the negotiation of other conditions.

Concerning Mr. Kalamatiano I have already made many advances of which the Government of the United States has been informed and it seems to me that it will be better in this case also to wait a little longer for the decision of the Soviet Government before renewing my demand.

I can assure you that I shall neglect no opportunity for bringing this affair to a happy end and if I am writing to you in this sense today it is only in the interest of those prisoners in question and of the Government of the United States.

In asking you to kindly take these lines in consideration accept [etc.]

Fridtjof Nansen
  1. Not printed.