740.00119 European War/9–2344

The British Embassy to the Department of State


His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom are considering the possibility that as the situation in Germany grows more critical, enemy warships and merchant vessels and military and civil aircraft may endeavour to evade capture and seek refuge in neutral territory.

In order to safeguard the position, His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom are anxious to instruct His Majesty’s representatives in neutral countries, viz., Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela, to remind the Governments to which they are accredited, at a suitable opportunity, that the United Nations will be entitled to decide upon the ultimate disposal of all enemy vessels and aircraft that may reach neutral territory. Those Governments must be held responsible not only for interning warships and military aircraft but also for preserving intact all vessels and aircraft including merchant ships and civil aircraft pending their ultimate disposal.
His Majesty’s Embassy is instructed to invite the United States Government to associate themselves with the proposed démarche.