Memorandum by the Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs (Murray) to the Assistant Secretary of State (Shaw)
As you know, a consulate is about to be established at Asmara, and it has been our thought that the consular officer there could proceed to Addis Ababa from time to time to investigate the local situation and report thereon. In that way we could be kept adequately informed of developments during the present transition period.
It is not yet clear how the new government at Addis Ababa is going to work out, and my own view is that we would be somewhat premature in establishing full diplomatic relations until such time as we can see the situation more clearly. Furthermore, as you know, there is a great shortage of officers in the Near East, and many of our missions and consular officers are greatly under-staffed. With the opening of new missions and consulates at Jidda, Kabul, Tabriz, Basra, and Asmara, there has been an additional demand for officers, and I really do not see where the personnel required for Addis Ababa could be obtained at the present time. I would suggest, therefore, that we might in due course request an exequatur for use at Addis Ababa for our Consul at Asmara. So far as his functions at Asmara are concerned no exequatur has been requested, nor, apparently, is one required. I believe that the arrangement proposed would meet the situation until such time as we can see more clearly what is required at Addis Ababa or until adequate personnel may become available.