The Ambassador of the Soviet Union (Gromyko) to the Secretary of State


Your Excellency: In accordance with instructions of the Soviet Government, I have the honor to bring to your attention the following:

According to information published in the press within the past few days the Anglo-American command in Europe is taking measures not to return Soviet prisoners of war and Soviet citizens interned in Germany to the Soviet Union. According to the information at hand the command of the American Ninth Army has developed, toward this end, a program under which it is proposed that former Soviet prisoners of war and interned citizens remain, after liberation from German captivity, in the German prisoner-of-war camps, homes and farmhouses in which they were found. The Anglo-American command is encouraging the hiring by Germans of Soviet citizens liberated from German captivity, persuading them to remain in Germany by mentioning that their homeland is too far distant for it to be possible for them to be repatriated. The command intends to accomplish the return of the Soviet citizens mentioned to the Soviet Union after the Anglo-American armies unite with the Red Army.

In accordance with instructions of the Soviet Government, I am obliged to state that it is extremely perturbed by the inadmissible activities of such a character on the part of the Anglo-American command and that it in no way can agree with such a plan for the return of liberated Soviet prisoners of war and civilians as worked out by the Anglo-American command.

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In accordance with instructions of the Soviet Government, I insist on the immediate cancellation of this plan and of all the measures of the command mentioned above and on the inadmissibility of their continuing in effect. I desire also to emphasize the necessity, in accordance with the agreement of February 11, 1945, of immediately directing all Soviet citizens liberated by armies under American command to special collection camps, of providing them with proper food, clothing and medical assistance, of immediately informing representatives of the Soviet repatriation authorities in regard to all such discovered persons, and also of taking steps to hasten their dispatch to their homeland.

The Soviet Government expects the taking by the Government of the United States of America of appropriate and effective measures, envisaged in the agreement of February 11, 1945, for the repatriation of Soviet citizens to the U.S.S.R. and the exact fulfillment of the above-mentioned agreement.

Accept [etc.]

A. Gromyko