Memorandum of Conversation, by the Under Secretary of State (Welles)


The Italian Ambassador called to see me this morning at my request. I informed the Ambassador that the President desired me to let him know that Prince Ascanio Colonna would be acceptable to him as the Italian ambassador to replace Signor Suvich; but that he had requested me to make it very clear to the Ambassador that in receiving the new Italian ambassador, exactly the same procedure would be followed as in the case of the reception of Signor Suvich two years ago, and that the acceptance of letters of credence for the new ambassador from the “King of Italy and Emperor of Ethiopia” would imply in no sense any change in our relationship with Italy nor any intention on our part to undertake such a new relationship.

The Ambassador said that he understood fully the import of my statement, and that it meant that the reception by the President of the new ambassador would not imply recognition by this Government [Page 725]of the Ethiopian Empire any more than it had implied such recognition when he himself was received. I said that this was exactly the message which the President had desired me to convey to him. The Ambassador seemed to be in no way surprised or disconcerted by the message given him, and merely said that he would inform his Government accordingly by telegram.

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S[umner] W[elles]