740.00119 European War 1939/2–2245: Telegram

The Ambassador in Italy (Kirk) to the Secretary of State

499. In a recent conversation with Macmillan, De Gasperi and Prunas78 stressed to him the necessity that the Italian Government be in a position when the north is liberated to point to concrete achievements for the improvement of Italy’s position and in this connection emphasized the importance which the Italian Government attached to a revision of the armistice terms. According to Prunas, Macmillan expressed understanding of the Government’s position and suggested to Prunas that the Foreign Office prepare a draft along the lines of the agreement they had in mind.

Prunas today brought me a draft agreement79 which he intends to present to Macmillan. (See my letter to Dunn of September 23, 1944.)80 The preamble refers to understanding that armistice terms would be revised in the light of Italy’s contribution to the war effort and declares that whereas Italian forces including patriots have cooperated in war against Germany at cost of great sacrifices and have proved Italy’s determination to reestablish free institutions in democratic [Page 998] tradition, it is deemed convenient to substitute armistice terms with agreement consonant with de jure and de facto relations between Italy and United Nations. There then follow 21 articles of which the following is a paraphrase:

Article 1. Italy undertakes not to make a separate peace or armistice with Germany but will continue to participate in the fight against Germany with all her land, sea and air forces until the total destruction of Nazi tyranny. Italy hereby further declares her adherence to the Atlantic Charter81 and to the “Declaration of the United Nations” which was signed January first, 1942 at Washington.82

Article 2. Italian land, sea and air forces will continue to operate under the orders of the Allied Commander-in-Chief and this article shall be implemented by special military, naval and air conventions to be signed between the representatives of the Allied Commander-in-Chief and the competent Italian authorities.

Article 3. The Italian Government shall be furnished by the Governments of Great Britain and the United States, in addition to the supplies originating and produced in Italy which shall be at the free and full disposal of the Italian authorities, with all supplies necessary to maintain, arm and operate the Italian armed forces in order to enable the latter to participate in the struggle against the common enemy in the largest possible measure.

Article 4. The United Nations shall have the right to use freely Italian territory and territorial waters and the air above them for their land, sea and air forces, war and merchant ships, and military and civil airplanes in the prosecution of the war against the common enemy. The United Nations will be afforded for their armed forces all necessary facilities and assistance to enable the latter to carry out their functions and for the free transit of their war materials and supplies.

Article 5. The Italian authorities shall regulate, in accordance with directions of the Allied Commander-in-Chief, the use of communication systems, ports, shipping and airports within Italian territory.

The Italian authorities, except as provided for by special agreements for Allied military requirements, shall manage and operate transportation means.

Italian communications shall be reestablished, both internally and with countries outside of Italy. Competent Italian authorities shall manage and operate these communications in accordance with conditions to be agreed upon in the interest of military security.

Article 6. The Italian Merchant Marine will continue to be at the disposal of the United Nations and to be employed for the common cause in agreement with the North Africa Shipping Board. The Italian Government shall have a representative on this Shipping Board. A portion of the Italian merchant fleet adequate to meet the urgent needs of the civilian population shall be used for the purpose [Page 999] of carrying supplies to Italy and in the traffic between ports (of the mainland of Italy and those of other Italian territories.

Article 7. There shall be corresponding credits and supplies in favor of Italy to balance all monies disbursed by the United Nations in Italy for military expenses or for other expenses in any way connected with the war, whether paid in Italian currency furnished by the Italian Government or in currency issued by the Allied Governments.

Similar credits and supplies shall also be made available in respect to all other burdens borne by Italy on behalf of the United Nations, such as payments, requisitions, supplies, liabilities, services, and other expenses in connection with the cost of the military operations carried out on Italian territory or in Italian waters by the United Nations. The actual figure of above credits and supplies shall be established on the basis of an equitable estimate, which shall take into account the current prices both of the Italian and the international markets.

Article 8. The principles governing economic and financial activities, foreign commercial and financial operations, foreign exchange and the regulation of production and of trade shall be fixed in common agreement between the United Nations and the Italian Government. Special agreements shall be made regarding measures to combat inflation in all its forms.

Article 9. The Italian Government shall have the entire and full administration of liberated Italian territories with the exception of military operation areas, the latter to be administered by the military authorities in accordance with agreements to be made between the Allies and the Italian Government to regulate the question in a manner similar to the one adopted in the case of the territories of the United Nations.

All agreements and understandings reached between the Italian Government and the Allied Commander-in-Chief on the restitution of the provinces to Italian administration shall expire at the entry in force of the present instrument, with the exception of those areas and matters for which it will be deemed necessary to agree on a special transition arrangement.

Article 10. The Allied authorities shall refrain, in territories under direct Italian administration, from direct requisitioning of any kind. In accordance with guiding principles fixed by mutual agreement, the Italian authorities shall provide, also on behalf of the Allies, for the requisitions necessary for the prosecution of the war against the common enemy. These requisitions shall take into account essential necessities of the civilian population, the requirements for economic reconstruction and those for the preservation and protection of the artistic and cultural patrimony of Italy.

Article 11. With the exception of the matter provided for in the particular agreements referred to in following article 12, in territories under direct Italian administration only the competent Italian authorities shall effect arrest of persons and only the Italian judiciary authorities shall be empowered to prosecute in accordance with Italian law anyone suspected of hostile acts or of offences against property to the detriment of the Allied military forces or their members, [Page 1000] or of official representatives and agents of the United Nations or suspected of seditious demonstrations against the Allied forces or of actions which in any way would hamper the war effort or aid the enemy.

The Italian police authorities shall exercise their normal duties of supervision and control in respect of citizens of the United Nations not belonging to the armed forces and in respect of all citizens of neutral countries, who in order to enter Italian territory must be in possession of a regular entry visa issued by the Italian diplomatic or consular authorities in whose jurisdiction the above mentioned citizens of the United Nations and neutral citizens reside.

Article 12. The powers of the Allied military police, and the juridical status of the members of the armed forces of the United Nations on territory under Italian direct administration shall be regulated by special agreements in conformity with the principles followed in this matter by the United Nations.

Article 13. Full diplomatic relations shall be reestablished between Italy and all the United Nations following the entry into force of the present instrument. Full rights, privileges and immunities recognized by international custom shall be enjoyed by the respective diplomatic and consular officers.

There shall be repealed all exceptional legislative and administrative measures of an economic or personal character which had been adopted by the United Nations in respect of the Italian State and or of Italian subjects following the state of war or the interruption of diplomatic relations formerly existing between the United Nations and Italy.

Article 14. Upon the entry into force of the present agreement, Italian servicemen still in the power of the United Nations shall cease to be considered prisoners of war and shall be allowed to participate actively and directly in the fight against the common enemy. They shall be repatriated to Italy to as large an extent as possible, for the purpose of being incorporated within the Italian Armed Forces or otherwise employed in the national war effort.

Any decision contrary to the settlement assured to Italy by the peace treaties at the end of the last war, or any decision affecting Italian interests, shall be taken only with the participation of the Italian Government.

In accordance with conditions which will be established at the earliest opportunity between the Italian Government and the other governments concerned, the status of Italian servicemen operating with the Allied Forces shall be recognized to those servicemen who will continue to serve with above armed forces or will in future be attached thereto.

Article 15. The competent Italian authorities, in conformity with the solemn engagement undertaken by the Italian Government in the declaration of May 10, 1944, shall arrest and try all persons suspected of having committed war crimes or analogous offences whose names appear on lists prepared by the competent body established by the United Nations and who now or in the future are or will be found on territory controlled by the Allied military authorities or by the Italian Govermnent.

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Special provisions shall also be taken in order to bring to trial all persons of whatever nationality who, subsequent to September 8, 1943,83 on or outside Italian territory have committed war crimes or analogous offenses against Italian citizens.

The Italian Government shall be represented on the body created by the United Nations for all questions connected with the punishment of war crimes.

Article 16. For the purpose of providing urgently for the revival of Italian economic life, and without prejudice to Italian rights arising out of the destruction and plundering carried out by the Germans on Italian territory, assets of whatever kind, whether the property of the Italian State, of Italian public and private bodies or of Italian-citizens, carried by the enemy to Germany or transferred to neutral countries shall be returned to the Italian Government. Should these assets have been destroyed or dispersed or should it be impossible to return them in good condition, the Italian Government shall be entitled to adequate substitutions. The United Nations shall not recognize, to the detriment of the lawful Italian owners, the validity and effectiveness of any juridical act of the enemy in respect of the above assets.

Italy shall be represented on the Moscow Reparations Committee provided for in the Yalta declaration of February 1945.84

Article 17. According to agreements which will be reached with the Italian Government, Italians, members of the armed forces or civilians, found in Germany or German occupied or controlled territory, having been deported there or coerced to take up residence there, shall be liberated and assisted within the limits permitted by security reasons with view to their repatriation.

To provide for assistance to Italian nationals and to cooperate with the United Nations authorities, the Italian Government will be authorized to send representative to the above mentioned territories.

Article 18. The Allied Commission shall proceed with the demobilization of its organization, excepting only those services directly connected with the war effort and with Italian economic rehabilitation.

The Allied Commission shall have the right, however, to intervene on every occasion when a particular situation is considered liable to cause prejudice to either the prosecution of the war or the democratic reconstruction of the country in accord with the principles of the Yalta declaration of February 1945.

Article 19. In order to bring within its scope all the Mediterranean area, the Advisory Council for Italy will extend its tasks and competence, and shall be designated “Ambassadors Committee for the Mediterranean”. It shall be parallel and complementary to the European Advisory Council, with which it will work. An Italian representative shall sit on the Committee with the rank of Ambassador.

Article 20. In all discussions intended to further and ensure peace, and in all international organizations which may subsequently be [Page 1002] brought into being to further peace and economic reconstruction, the Italian Government shall be called to take part.

Article 21. Superseding the armistice terms of September 3, 1943 and the additional terms of September 29, 1943,85 the present agreement shall enter into force immediately, and shall remain in force until the end of hostilities with Germany when, having regard to the new situation which shall have then arisen, it shall be subject to reconsideration. (End paraphrase.)

In connection with the foregoing I refer to my 388, February 13, 1 p.m., last paragraph, paragraphs 2 and 3 of my 339, February 7, 4 p.m., and my 281 of February 1, 4 p.m.86

  1. Renato Prunas, Secretary General of the Italian Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Not found in Department files.
  4. Joint statement, by President Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Churchill, August 14, 1941, Foreign Relations, 1941, vol. i, p. 367.
  5. For text, see ibid., 1942, vol. i, p. 25.
  6. Date on which General Eisenhower announced that the Italian Armistice was in force.
  7. February 11, 1945; for text, see Conferences at Malta and Yalta, p. 968.
  8. For texts, see Department of State, Treaties and Other International Acts Series No. 1604, or 61 Stat. (pt. 3) 2740 and 2742.
  9. None printed.