125.0065/200: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Italy (Phillips)

428. Your 844, June 19, 7:30 p.m. You are instructed to submit the following reply to Count Vitetti’s note concerning the activities of American Consuls in Italy:

“The Embassy of the United States of America has the honor to acknowledge the communication from the Royal Ministry for Foreign Affairs relating to the activities in Italy of American Consuls and requesting that officials and employees of American nationality in the consular offices of the United States and the Kingdom of Italy and [Page 801] in territories under Italian sovereignty be withdrawn. Under instructions from its Government the Embassy states in reply that the Government of the United States cannot accept the charge that American consular officers have acted improperly and wholly rejects the allegations contained in the note under reference.

“Under the circumstances the Government of the United States is making arrangements to effect the withdrawal of its consular officers from Italian territory and the American Embassy will make arrangements for the removal and safety of the American citizens and property involved.”

Detailed instructions regarding the closing of American Offices will follow shortly.

For your information, we are, through the Italian Ambassador here, requesting the Italian Government to remove its consular officers from the United States, as well as all Italian nationals in any way connected with organizations of the Italian Government in the United States with the exception of its representation in Washington.