740.00115 European War 1939/318: Telegram

The Chargé in France (Murphy) to the Secretary of State

396. Department’s 229, March 26, 7 p.m. The French and German Governments have come to a firm agreement for the mutual repatriation of the following categories of civilians: [Page 199]

Boys under 17 years of age and those whose 17th birthday has occurred since September 3, 1939.
Men over 60 years of age.
Cripples and the incurably sick regardless of age.

The practical arrangements have been worked out and the first convoy of Germans will leave France on April 9.

The Department will recall that in response to representations made by the Embassy on the general subject of the treatment to be accorded civilian enemy aliens, the French Government advanced proposals for an exchange of certain categories of civilians, which exchange, in its final form, is about to be consummated. At the same time the French Government stated that it considered this first exchange, if consummated, as a preliminary to proposals affecting other categories of civilians. (Reference is made to my telegram No. 2971, December 13, 10 p.m.16a and my despatch No. 5786 [5486] of December 20, 193917).

We have of course been maintaining close contact with the Foreign Office on this subject. This morning the competent official rehearsed the French policy towards civilian enemy aliens and reiterated the French Government’s willingness to propose further exchanges as soon as the execution of the present one is under way.