765.75/435: Telegram

The Ambassador in France ( Bullitt ) to the Secretary of State

682. While the Foreign Office has received no confirmation of the entry of Italian troops in Tirana, the last telegram received from the French Minister stated that the Italians were but 15 kilometers from the capital. Zog is reported to be continuing his resistance and to be determined to hold out as long as possible.

[Page 380]

François-Poncet19 has cabled from Rome that Perth has received “assurances” from Ciano that the Italian action against Albania is in no wise intended to affect the independence and integrity of Albania and that therefore there has been no modification in the Mediterranean status quo.

It is the impression at the Foreign Office here that the British Government will probably decide that it can do nothing more than make the best of a bad business. Certainly there is no intention in Great Britain or France to go to war over the Albanian affair.

The Foreign Office states that the Yugoslavs profess to be satisfied with the assurances they have received from Italy that Yugoslav interests will be respected. It is felt here that Yugoslavia is in such a weak position diplomatically, militarily and internally, that this is the only position which the Yugoslav Government can adopt. The Foreign Office is informed that in Greece there is the greatest concern over the Albanian situation.

  1. André François-Poncet, French Ambassador in Italy.