711.94114 Supplies/7–1345: Telegram

The Minister in Switzerland (Harrison) to the Secretary of State

3553. Japan—American Interests. Legation’s A–821 June 2173 and previous. Foreign Office note July 11 gives following substance interview July 3 Gorgé and Suzuki. Gorgé drew attention grave uneasiness food problem POWs and civilian internees result existing food shortage.

Gorgé recalled question regarding civilian internees capable settlement by further repatriation. However situation POWs doubtless worsen unless supplies received via Siberia. Gorgé insisted that in authorizing transport by Awa Maru food, medicines, other articles lacking POWs, Japanese Government had not shown generosity but merely taken measure permitting it to substitute this measure for its obligations toward POWs whose minimum well-being properly assurable by Japanese.

Gorgé had impression Suzuki recognized justice these statements but latter nevertheless recalled difficulties raised by numerous Japanese [Page 413] circles as result employment Awa Maru this purpose. These circles believed Japan itself should assume all responsibility maintenance POWs its proper means. Following torpedoing Awa Maru, Suzuki anticipated stronger opposition and Gorgé unable envision presently sending another vessel Nakhodka.

Suzuki failed comment regarding manner remedy situation. Gorgé believes despite efforts Japanese Government increase production potatoes, grave food shortage may be anticipated and internees and POWs will suffer as all Japanese population.

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