890d.01/171: Telegram

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


13. Your telegram 3 of January 4. … The question is not one of making a new extradition treaty with France but of extending the present treaty as provided by article 7 of the mandate. The Department understands that under article II of the proposed convention and under article 7 of the mandate it would be the duty of France to extradite to the United States from Syria. It is doubtful, however, whether there would be a reciprocal obligation for the United States, to extradite to Syria. Under the laws of the United States this Government would not have the power to extradite in the absence of suck an obligation. (See Moore, J. B.: Digest of International Law, vol IV, pp. 246–253.) A special provision extending the extradition treaty to Syria should be included in the convention in order to meet this objection. This was proposed in our telegram 466, December 17.7

The Department believes that the insertion in the convention of a provision for reciprocal extradition, as indicated in the new article VII proposed in our telegram 466, would be in the interest of France, but it is ready to proceed to the signing of the convention with the reference to extradition omitted if the Foreign Office prefers that procedure after you have orally presented these considerations.

You may inform the Foreign Office that a further communication regarding the Palestine convention has been received from the British Government and that the Department plans to take up negotiations with that Government for an early conclusion of a convention regarding Palestine similar to the one concerning Syria. The Department in 1922 made the same proposals, mutatis mutandis, as you doubtless know, regarding Syria and Palestine.