711.689 Seamen/7

The Secretary of State to the Greek Minister ( Sicilianos )

The Secretary of State presents his compliments to the Honorable the Minister of Greece and, with further reference to the Minister’s note No. 321, of March 6, 1936, in which it was proposed that the Government of the United States and the Government of Greece enter into an agreement for the reciprocal recognition of seamen’s identification cards, has the honor to inform the Minister as follows:

Under existing regulations, Greek seamen, as well as all other alien seamen, arriving at a port in the United States, sent forward by the owners to join a foreign vessel in such port as members of the crew, may be admitted into the United States without passports if traveling on a group transit certificate issued by an American consular officer. It is very seldom that individual seamen are sent to the United States for the purpose of joining a foreign vessel. Passports are not required of alien seamen who are granted shore leave.

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In view of the foregoing, the competent authorities of the Government of the United States are not aware of any need for such an agreement as has been proposed. However, should the Greek Government desire to submit observations with respect to its understanding of the need for an agreement of the nature suggested, the Secretary of State will be glad to request that further consideration be given to the matter by these authorities.42

  1. The Greek Minister renewed his proposals in a note dated December 14, 1937, but the Secretary of State in his reply of January 25, 1938, again refused to enter into such an agreement (711.689 Seamen/8, 12).