740.00117 P.W/116

The Department of State to the Spanish Embassy


The Department of State refers to memorandum no. 94 (Ex. 111.00) of May 9, 1944 from the Spanish Embassy in charge of Japanese interests in the continental United States and to the Department’s memorandum of May 16, 194432 in acknowledgment thereof concerning a message from the Japanese Government in respect of the reply made by the United States Government to the Japanese protest alleging attacks on the Arabia Maru and five other Japanese hospital ships.

The United States Government reiterates its regret that accidental attacks should have been made upon Japanese hospital ships. The present opportunity is also availed of to repeat the assurances that all United States forces are strictly admonished to respect the immunity of hospital ships and are doing so to the maximum extent that is provided for by international usage and that the distinguish-ability of Japanese hospital ships permits. The United States Government disclaims responsibility for the attacks cited, however, since those that have been substantiated were made under circumstances [Page 1162] that unavoidably precluded the according of immunity under international practice.

  1. Latter not printed.