740.00116 European War 1939/1159: Telegram

The Consul General at Algiers (Wiley) to the Secretary of State

2025. From Murphy.31 In connection with trial of German prisoners of war accused of atrocities falling within purview of Moscow declaration, it may be interesting to note that a directive has been sent to Fifteenth Army Group in which latter is instructed not to try accused immediately but to hold them in custody and to collect evidence. Accused are to be segregated to prevent evasion and article 2 of Geneva Convention32 will be observed.

Evidence of war crimes is to be recorded whether accused are prisoners of war or not and witnesses are to be protected in order to procure full testimony. Announcement is to be made that alleged murderers have been captured (this relates to an incident arising in the village of Caiazzo33). Prisoners are to be kept in custody awaiting full judicial proceedings which United Nations will eventually hold in the case of all persons accused of war crimes. [Murphy.]

  1. Robert D. Murphy, United States Political Adviser, Staff of Supreme Allied Commander, Mediterranean Theatre; also personal representative of President Roosevelt in North Africa.
  2. International convention relative to the treatment of prisoners of war, signed at Geneva, July 27, 1929, Foreign Relations, 1929, vol. i, p. 336.
  3. The massacre of Italian civilians by German officers.