762.94/82: Telegram

The Chargé in the Soviet Union (Henderson) to the Secretary of State

281. My 279, November 17, 6 p.m. A Tass release published in today’s Izvestiya read as follows:

“According to information obtained by Tass from authoritative circles the Chargé d’Affaires of Japan in the U.S.S.R., Mr. Sakoh, in a conversation which took place on the 14th of this month with the Chief of the Second Eastern Division of the People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs, Comrade Bikoslovski, declared that all the rumors concerning a Japanese-German agreement were without foundation and that the Ministry for Foreign Affairs had instructed him to deny these rumors officially as untrue.

On the 16th of this month in a conversation with the Ambassador of the U.S.S.R. in Tokyo, Comrade K. Yurenev, the Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr. Arita while denying the conclusion of any agreement directed against the U.S.S.R. admitted that conversations were proceeding with a third state which he did not name concerning the establishment of a bloc to fight Communism. Mr. Arita stated in this connection that Japan was endeavoring to establish closer and more friendly relations with the U.S.S.R. and that the conversations which were being carried on with a third state had neither direct nor indirect influence on Japanese-Soviet relations. Basing itself on these same authoritative sources, Tass is able to report, however, that the conversations with a third state, the existence of which Mr. Arita admitted, have been carried on with Germany and have led to the initialing of an agreement. Although this agreement, which is to be published, is concerned with the fight against Communism, in actuality the agreement is a cloak for a secret German-Japanese treaty concerning coordinating actions of Japan and Germany in the event that one or more finds itself at war with a third state”.