The British Chargé ( Chilton ) to the Secretary of State

No. 561

His Britannic Majesty’s Chargé d’Affaires presents his compliments to the Secretary of State and, with reference to the note which Mr. Hughes was so good as to address to His Majesty’s Ambassador on June 3rd conveying the acceptance of the United States Government of the invitation to participate in a commission of enquiry into the recent massacres in Asia Minor, has the honour to inform Mr. Hughes that, in deference to the opinion of the French Government, His Majesty’s Government are inclined to consider that, in view of the state of war still existing between the Allies and Turkey, the prospects of securing an early and satisfactory conclusion of the proposed enquiry would be enhanced if it were entrusted to a neutral agency. The International Red Cross of Geneva are prepared, if desired, to undertake the enquiry and Mr. Chilton is instructed to ascertain whether the United States Government would agree to this offer on the part of the International Red Cross being accepted.

In the event of the United States Government agreeing to this course, His Majesty’s Government would propose to invite the International Red Cross to select the members of the two commissions as soon as possible and to send them to Constantinople to discuss the question with the representatives of the four Governments there. His Majesty’s Government also hope that the United States Government would in this event be prepared to send the necessary instructions to their representatives at Constantinople and Athens in [Page 930] order to allow of the necessary request for facilities being formally addressed to the Greek Government and the Nationalist Government at Angora with the least possible delay.