741.90g9 Judicial/4: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Dawes)

104. The Department has received unofficially a copy of a letter, dated March 21, 1931 from the British Government to the Secretary General of the League of Nations regarding the signature and bringing into force in the near future of a new judicial agreement between that Government and the Government of Iraq. This communication refers to a resolution adopted on January 22, 1931, by the Council of the League, approving the terms of the Anglo-Iraqi Judicial Agreement of June 30, 1930, “subject to the consent of the Powers whose nationals enjoy privileges under the Agreement of March 25, 1924” The letter goes on to state that “the fourteen Powers in question have now notified to His Majesty’s Government their assent to the proposed agreement … and … the necessary steps will now be taken to bring the new regime into force as soon as possible.”

The consent of this Government to the proposed new agreement has never been requested. Under the circumstances the Department finds it difficult to understand the statement in the above mentioned letter to the effect that “the fourteen Powers in question” have given their consent to the new agreement. For two reasons the United States was undoubtedly one of the Powers whose consent should have [Page 600]been sought. In the first place, the United States was one of the Powers which was entitled to enjoy judicial privileges in Iraq by the very terms of Article I of the Judicial Agreement of March 25, 1924. Secondly, and of greater importance, under the provisions of Article 6 of the Tripartite Convention of January 9, 1930, the assent of this Government is necessary before the new Judicial Agreement can be made effective with respect to American nationals.

Please call the attention of the Foreign Office informally to its apparent oversight in omitting to request the consent of the United States to the new Agreement and inform the Department promptly of the results of your conversation.