740.00119 Control (Italy)/9–1746: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Chargé in the Soviet Union ( Durbrow )


1806. Ur 3495 Sept 17. In concert your British colleague, you should reply along following lines FonOff protest re travel restrictions on Sov reps Italy:

[Page 863]

This Govt is surprised at Sov protest re procedure followed by Alcorn Italy for travel Sov reps, which applies equally to all Allied officers in Italy. This procedure was designed primarily for convenience officers concerned, and to assist local commanders who must have advance notice if they are to extend fullest cooperation in providing military accommodations, motor fuel, etc. Moreover, since there are no general restrictions as to areas which may be visited by Allied officers, it is possible for them to travel freely to any region other than AMG territory without recourse to Alcorn. This Govt is informed that in practice many Allied officers do in fact travel throughout Italy without obtaining travel orders from Alcorn or even notifying it of their trips. FonOff must be aware that no request by Sov reps to Alcorn for travel orders has been refused during recent months, and that no complaints have been lodged with Alcorn thereon; on contrary, it is understood that Sov reps in Italy have expressed themselves as more than satisfied with arrangements made for them.

It appears to this Govt that procedure followed for Allied officers in Italy is far more satisfactory than those in effect in Hungary, Rumania and Bulgaria. In Bulgaria, US reps must give minimum of 48 hours notice in writing all trips outside Sofia zone, and must furnish names of all persons making trip, date and hour departure and return, itinerary and mode of travel. On several occasions ACC has notified US reps that intended travel was not authorized. In Rumania, 2 days advance notice of travel, including data re personnel, itinerary and dates departure and arrival, must likewise be given ACC by US reps, who have been denied admission to certain areas of country. In Hungary, travel of US reps outside Budapest is dependent upon receipt of special permit from ACC for each trip, which must be obtained in advance, and in that country also ACC has in some instances refused to grant necessary permit.

This Govt therefore sees no basis for Sov protest in this matter, and for its part would be more than pleased to have its reps in Hungary, Rumania and Bulgaria accorded same degree of freedom of travel which is enjoyed by Sov reps in Italy.

Sent Moscow as 1806 rptd for info to Rome as 1892, Bucharest as 658, Sofia as 327 and Budapest as 1056.