The Minister in Yugoslavia (Wilson) to the Secretary of State

No. 672

Sir: Referring to the Legation’s despatch No. 585 of September 15, 1936,2 and previous correspondence concerning the proposed Naturalization Treaty between Yugoslavia and the United States, I have the honor to report that I yesterday again inquired of Mr. Andritch, Chief of the Diplomatic Section of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, how the matter stood at the present time. He replied that not much progress had been made since our last conversation in overcoming the aversion of the military elements to the conclusion of such a treaty. This state of affairs, if I remember correctly, was explained to the Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs during my visit in Washington in October last by Mr. Fotitch, Yugoslav Minister at Washington, who, as the Department knows is personally strongly in favor of the treaty. Recently also Mr. Yankovitch, former Yugoslav Consul General at New York was in Belgrade, on his way to his new post as Yugoslav Minister at Tirana, and he urged very strongly upon the Foreign Office the advisability and desirability, from the point of view of both countries, of concluding a Naturalization Treaty with the United States. Mr. Andritch also told me that recently the Foreign Office had received a number of petitions from certain Yugoslav organizations in the United States urging the early conclusion of such a treaty, and that the Foreign Office would accordingly again shortly approach the Ministry of War and try to overcome its opposition. At the Ministry of Foreign Affairs he said everyone was in favor of the proposed treaty and that the opposition of the military elements was alone responsible for its being held up.

As I have reported previously, in a country like Yugoslavia the military elements are very powerful and other Departments of the Government take great care not to antagonize them in any way.

Respectfully yours,

Charles S. Wilson