740.0011 European War 939/33000a: Circular airgram

The Secretary of State to the Diplomatic Representatives in the American Republics

For your information, there is repeated the text of the statement made by Mr. Eden in the House of Commons, January 27, 1944, concerning the attitude of his Government toward the severance of relations with the Axis by Argentina:

“It will be recalled that, on September 27th, 1943, His Majesty’s Government publicly announced their disappointment that successive Argentine Governments should have maintained a policy of neutrality which left Axis nationals free to conspire on Argentine soil against the interests and security of the United Nations. In their reply, published the following day, the Argentine Government reciprocated our desire for friendship, but denied that it was still the case that harm might come to the security and interests of the United Nations from action organized from Argentine territory. The Argentine Government added that should, nevertheless, any incident occur, punishment would be swift and inexorable, and they reaffirmed their determination to work for closer relations with this country. Some time later, His Majesty’s Government decided, on the basis of information in their possession, to detain the Argentine national Hellmuth on his way from Argentina to Europe. The information which, as a result, they were subsequently in a position to furnish to the Argentine Government, led to the latter’s decision, made public on January 22nd, to hold an investigation into the existence of an enemy espionage organization on Argentine territory. The announcement also stated that a number of persons had already been detained, and that appropriate sanctions would be applied against those responsible, in order to put an end to all activity contrary to the international policy of the Argentine nation. On January 26th, the Argentine Foreign Minister announced that his Government had decided to break off relations with Germany and Japan. His Majesty’s Government welcome the news that Argentina has, as they have always desired, at last abandoned her neutrality. They confidently expect that the formal act of rupture will be followed by immediate and effective action against the whole spy organization, and that not only will German and Japanese officials and those of other enemy or enemy associated countries be expelled from Argentina as soon as possible, but that steps will also be taken to put an end to all undesirable enemy activity on Argentine soil. It is by such action that the Argentine Government can most effectively and quickly dispel the anxiety inspired by a number of recent developments in that country, which I need not further specify. I may mention that we have already told the Argentine Government, in reply to a request from them, that we shall be glad to help them in their investigations. I must add that His Majesty’s Government have been in the closest touch throughout with the Government of the United States of America, and that the exchange of information and views between our two governments has been of the fullest, frankest, and most cordial nature.”