The Chargé in Egypt (Hare) to the Secretary of State
[Received June 28.]
Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Legation’s telegram no. 63 of May 8, 4 p.m., 1940, and the Department’s telegraphic reply no. 34 of May 17, 7 p.m., regarding exemption from payment of customs duty by American consular officers in Egypt following the termination of the three-year period specified in the third paragraph of Article 11 of the Montreux Convention, and to enclose a copy of a note on this subject addressed to the Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs on May 29, 1940.
Following the delivery of the Legation’s note I have had several conversations with the Chief of Protocol of the Egyptian Foreign Office regarding this matter and he has assured me that appropriate orders will be issued without delay restoring customs franchise to American consular officers to whom such exemption was accorded before May 8, 1940. Thus far, however, the Legation has not been furnished a definite reply in respect of the number limitation on consular officers entitled to such exemption. However, this question is somewhat academic for the moment in as much as at neither Alexandria nor Port Said, the only American consular establishments in Egypt outside the combined office at Cairo, does the personnel exceed the limitation hitherto imposed.
As regards the case of Cairo, reference is made to the Legation’s despatch no. 2118 of this date entitled “Dual Commissions for Foreign Service Officers in Cairo”57 in which the matter of the exemption from payment of customs duty by officers at this post was discussed.