765.84/4301: Telegram

The Minister Resident in Ethiopia (Engert) to the Secretary of State

298. Have just received call from member of Marshal Badoglio’s staff who handed me a note verbale in Italian dated today of which substance is as follows:

High Commissioner and Commander in Chief has in name of King of Italy assumed all military and civil powers and has appointed a military and a civil government for the city of Addis Ababa which, under his orders, will be governed in accordance with the laws and military ordinances of Italy.

“Based on these laws and ordinances and pending further disposition regarding the cessation of hostilities and the new status of the country the Chief of Mission and the members of the Legation of the United States of America will enjoy the prerogatives accorded to them for the representation of the interests of the countries represented by them and for the protection of their respective nations [subjects]”

(Italian text of above paragraph reads as follows:

“In base a tali leggi ed a tali ordinamenti fino alle future determinazione relativo al cessazione delle ostilita ed al nuevo assestamento del paese il capo missione ed i membri della legazione degli S. U. d’America godranno delle prerogative loro riconosciute per la rappresentazione degli interessi dei paesi da essi rappresentati e per la tutela dei respettivi loro sudditi.”)

Note then states that for these purposes they may address themselves to cabinet of High Commissioner who will insure protection of persons of Chief of Mission and members of American Legation and persons in their service as well as personal or real property belonging to them.

High Commissioner requests American Legation observe laws and military ordinances of Italy and hopes it will assist in maintaining good relations between High Commissioner and Legation.

Any official relations between the Legation and authorities other than Italian, or acts contrary to laws and ordinances published by High Commissioner, will not be recognized by the latter.

High Commissioner hopes that Legations realizing special circumstances and necessity of assuring, in the interests of the public, order discipline and justice, will also in their own interest and that of the occupied country lend cooperation for which High Commissioner would be grateful.