740.00112 European War 1939/8312: Telegram

The Minister in Sweden (Johnson) to the Secretary of State

1394. British Chargé d’Affaires and I saw Acting Secretary General Foreign Office today at his request. He said that he was glad to communicate to us Swedish Government’s formal acceptance of invitation to send representatives to London for trade negotiations and that for purposes of record a written reply to our notes would be delivered tomorrow. Mr. Söderblom stated informally that Swedish delegation would be composed of Mr. Gunnar Hägglöf, chairman, Mr. Marcus Wallenberg, Jr.,46 and Mr. Nils Ståhle. Messrs. Hägglöf and Ståhle are Foreign Office officials, Secretary will be Mr. de Besche likewise Foreign Office official. Mr. Gunnar Carlsson47 of Göteborg will be attached to delegation as technical assistant and adviser on all shipping matters. Swedish delegation is planning to leave Stockholm on May 6. Mr. Söderblom requests for security reasons that no publicity be given to forthcoming conference or to delegates having been named, either at Washington or London until after arrival of Swedish delegation in London.

Mr. Söderblom concluded by expressing his hope and belief that negotiations should have a successful conclusion and that he had never shared apprehensions which had existed among some of his colleagues that insuperable difficulties would arise for Sweden during these negotiations. He was undoubtedly referring to somewhat exaggerated apprehensions which Hägglöf voices from time to time that Sweden will be presented with impossible conditions.

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Klath48 and Mitcheson,49 Commercial Counselor, British Legation, are making every endeavor to leave Stockholm by May 2 or 3.

Repeated to London as my 225.

  1. Swedish banker and financier.
  2. Swedish shipowner.
  3. Thormod O. Klath, Commercial Attaché in Sweden.
  4. John M. L. Mitcheson.