The Secretary of State to the Minister in Greece ( MacVeagh )

No. 379

Sir: Reference is made to your despatch No. 1505, of January 22, 1937, reporting your discussion of the proposed protocol of interpretation of the final clause of Article I of the Treaty of Extradition between the United States and Greece with the Chief of the Treaty Division of the Greek Foreign Office.

The Department has noted Mr. Argyropoulos’ opinion that the protocol would not achieve the desired interpretation of the Treaty by the Greek courts and, incidentally, that the courts had correctly interpreted the language of the final clause of Article I in the Insull case.

While the Department cannot, of course, insist upon acceptance by the Greek Government of the protocol, neither is it in a position to agree to an alteration of the Treaty so as to bring it in harmony with the provisions of the Greek Extradition Law of February 7, 1904, which applies to procedure under treaties of the type of the Extradition Treaty between Greece and Belgium, nor does it desire merely to withdraw the notice of abrogation in the hope that the Greek courts will in future cases apply the Treaty in a manner more satisfactory to the Department than was done in the Insull case.

Furthermore, the Department is impressed with the fact that the Greek Ministry of Justice has raised no objection to the proposed protocol.

Under these circumstances, it is desired, if you perceive no serious objection to such a course, that you explain to the Foreign Office that, as it is impossible to harmonize the extradition procedure in the United States with Greek procedure under the Law of February 7, 1904, it is the opinion of your Government that the proposed protocol, despite such misgivings as Mr. Argyropoulos may have as to the manner in which its language might be interpreted by the Greek courts, constitutes the best compromise arrangement available and therefore that your Government would be pleased to enter into this arrangement and trusts that the Greek Government will find its way to do so.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
R. Walton Moore