The Minister in Norway (Swenson) to the Secretary of State

No. 1526

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my despatch No. 1453, of July 3, 1929, in regard to the proposed negotiations of a treaty between the United States and Norway providing that persons born in the United States of Norwegian parentage, and naturalized American citizens, shall not be held liable for military service or any other act of allegiance during a stay in the territory subject to the jurisdiction of the Norwegian Government while citizens of the United States of America under the laws thereof and to report that the Legation is now in receipt of a note from the Foreign Office, dated the 9th instant,42 in which the Norwegian Government expresses the opinion that there would seem to be no need for a new treaty provision regarding exemption from military service in Norway of persons [Page 474] who visit Norway temporarily. It is pointed out that such cases are likely to be so rare that they will be of little significance and that in case a man who has acquired both Norwegian and American nationality through birth and who has his permanent residence in the United States should visit Norway temporarily he will always have the opportunity of submitting the matter of his military service to the appropriate conscription authorities and that it may be confidently assumed that the matter will be decided with due regard to his American citizenship so that he will not be required to perform military duty in Norway during the period when, pursuant to the Convention of 1871,43 he is exempt therefrom, provided that all the circumstances governing the case point to his American citizenship.

The Department will observe that in my despatch of July 3, 1929, I stated that owing to an evident misapprehension of the Department of Justice as to the nature of the proposal submitted in my note of January 4, 1929, I would take the earliest opportunity to discuss the situation with the Foreign Office with a view to a renewed consideration of the subject.

I transmit herewith a copy of a note which I addressed to the Foreign Office under date of July 9, 1929,44 requesting that in the circumstances referred to the matter be given renewed consideration. The note from the Foreign Office, dated the 9th instant, of which a copy with translation is enclosed, is a reply to my communication.

I have [etc.]

Laurits S. Swenson
  1. Not printed.
  2. Naturalization convention concluded May 26, 1869; ratifications were exchanged on June 14, 1871; Malloy, Treaties, 1776–1909, vol. ii, p. 1758.
  3. Not printed.