The Soviet Commissar for Foreign Affairs (Litvinov) to President Roosevelt

My Dear Mr. President: Following our conversations I have the honor to inform you that the Soviet Government is prepared to include in a consular convention to be negotiated immediately following the establishment of relations between our two countries provisions in which nationals of the United States shall be granted rights with reference to legal protection which shall not be less favorable than those enjoyed in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics by nationals of the nation most [Page 811] favored in this respect. Furthermore, I desire to state that such rights will be granted to American nationals immediately upon the establishment of relations between our two countries.

In this connection I have the honor to call to your attention Article 11 and the Protocol to Article 11, of the Agreement Concerning Conditions of Residence and Business and Legal Protection in General concluded between Germany and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on October 12, 1925.

Article 11

Each of the Contracting Parties undertakes to adopt the necessary measures to inform the consul of the other Party as soon as possible whenever a national of the country which he represents is arrested in his district.

The same procedure shall apply if a prisoner is transferred from one place of detention to another.


Ad Article 11.

The consul shall be notified either by a communication from the person arrested or by the authorities themselves direct. Such communications shall be made within a period not exceeding seven times twenty-four hours, and in large towns, including capitals of districts, within a period not exceeding three times twenty-four hours.
In places of detention of all kinds, requests made by consular representatives to visit nationals of their country under arrest, or to have them visited by their representatives, shall be granted without delay. The consular representative shall not be entitled to require officials of the courts or prisons to withdraw during his interview with the person under arrest.

I am [etc.]

Maxim Litvinoff