891.77/711: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the Soviet Union ( Standley )97

16. By arrangement with British, United States Army has agreed to take over operation of Iranian railroad from Persian Gulf to Tehran and certain other transport routes and ports in southern Iran hitherto operated by British military authorities. Purpose of transfer is to expedite shipment of supplies to Russia. Iranian Government was officially notified of this plan on December 6 and expressed its agreement. However, under Anglo-Soviet-Iranian treaty of alliance Iranians feel they must have British and Russian consent. British concurrence was formally notified December 7, and Russian Ambassador Tehran is understood to have cabled his Government for instructions at that time but has received no reply.

Please take this matter up with Soviet authorities and express hope that early notification of Russian Government’s position may be made to Iranians. You may say that we have understood Soviets were aware of plan and favored it.

  1. Addressed to the Ambassador at Kuibyshev, temporary diplomatic capital of the Soviet Union. In telegram No. 17, January 8, the Department informed the Chargé in Iran of the dispatch of this telegram.