861.50 Am 3/7: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Germany ( Houghton )

116. [Paraphrase.] Your 173 of August 29, 4 p.m. Do not give written answer to Chicherin letter. In case he wishes to call upon you you may again tell him what it is believed you have already intimated to him, i.e., that the United States might give favorable consideration to the sending into Russia of a commission of technical experts provided there was assurance of the necessary facilities for investigation. No discussion of negotiations regarding economic or political matters or of the sending of a Soviet trade delegation to this country can be permitted. If a commission is sent to Russia it will be strictly a commission of experts with no authority whatever aside from the making of an investigation and report. [End paraphrase.]

The following statement is being given to the press at Washington today:

β€œIn reply to inquiries concerning a statement reported to have been made at Moscow regarding informal overtures by the American Government to the Soviet authorities looking to the sending of an investigation commission to Soviet Russia, it was explained at the State Department that the American Ambassador at Berlin had [Page 832] made inquiries with regard to the attitude of the Soviet authorities should this Government consider sending to Russia in the future an expert technical commission to study and report on the economic situation there. There has been no question at any time of sending any commission to Russia, other than an economic commission of experts to investigate and report.”

Phillips