The Secretary of State to the Chargé in the Netherlands (Johnson)

No. 750

Sir: The Department has received the Legation’s despatch No. 2010 of August 29, 1929, in reply to its instruction of March 19, 1929,38 concerning the proposed treaty in regard to nationality between the United States and the Netherlands. It appears that the Dutch Foreign Office is opposed to the provision of Article 3 of the Department’s draft concerning the presumed renunciation of naturalization in the case of a naturalized citizen who resumes residence of a permanent character in his country of origin, but may be willing to consider the conclusion of the proposed treaty with the omission of this article.

While Article 3 seems reasonable and desirable, especially from the point of view of the country of which a person was a national before his naturalization, the Department is not inclined to insist upon its inclusion in the proposed treaty.

As to Article 1, the Department considers that it is desirable to retain it in the treaty even though the existing Netherland law provides that Netherland nationality is lost by naturalization abroad.

Article 2 seems desirable, from the point of view of the two Governments and of the individuals concerned, since it defines the limitation upon the right of either country to punish its former nationals who have acquired naturalization in the other on account of failure to respond to calls for military service.

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As to Article 4, it does not appear that it would be in any sense inconsistent with the present Netherland law authorizing the Minister of Defense “to accord exemption for special cases which makes it possible to exonerate even persons possessing a dual nationality”. The provisions of this article would have the effect of relieving the Minister of Defense of the burden of granting special exemptions in cases of dual nationality covered by this article. It is believed that these provisions would tend to promote normal intercourse between the two countries by giving to the persons concerned some assurance that they would be able to visit the country of their parents’ nationality without molestation.

The Department desires that this matter be again brought to the attention of the Netherland Government with a view to reaching a definite agreement.

I am [etc.]

For the Secretary of State:
J. P. Cotton
  1. Not printed.