800.4016 DP/12–346: Telegram

The Minister in Hungary ( Schoenfeld ) to the Secretary of State


2256. Mytel 2242, November 29.52 Foreign Minister informed me [Page 373] today lie had not received reply from Czechoslovak Government to his note re abuse of alleged application of Czechoslovak forced labor decree to Magyars in Slovakia. He estimates 500 to 600 destitute refugees from current persecution have recently entered Hungary chiefly from areas near Danube. Gyöngyösi says it is plain from Czechoslovak press, intention is to transplant Magyars unwilling to be Slovakized from their present home to Bohemia and Moravia. Procedure being used against these Magyars who number about 300,000 may, he fears, lead to serious mass uprising when they become aware of real significance of Czechoslovak Government’s procedure which has thus far been restricted in scope. Meanwhile Hungarian Government has suspended movement of Slovaks from Hungary under an agreement and may be obliged to close Czechoslovak frontier which it is reluctant to do.

Gyöngyösi added Hungarian Government has received no answer from Czechoslovakia to note expressing desire to institute negotiations contemplated at Paris Conference but Czechoslovakia representative here has stated orally he believes answer will be forthcoming upon conclusion. No meetings now being attended by Masaryk53 and Clementis.

Foreign Minister has had no report from Hungarian Minister Washington, as to action taken to bring matter to attention US as instructed.54

In confidence Foreign Minister told me position of General Dastich as Czechoslovak representative here is threatened by Slovak disapproval of his conciliatory attitude toward Hungary which disapproval Gyöngyösi interprets as confirming differences between Czechoslovaks [Czechs?] and Slovaks re many matters including Hungarian problem.


[On December 20, 1946, Czechoslovak President Beneš had a general conversation with Ambassador Steinhardt in the course of which Benes gave his explanation for the difficulties in the negotiations between Czechoslovakia and Hungary on the question of the Hungarian minority in Slovakia. For Steinhardt’s report on the conversation with Beneš, see telegram 2008, December 23, 1946, from Praha, page 238.]

  1. Not printed; it reported receipt of a letter from Foreign Minister Gyöngyösi requesting that the case of the Hungarian minority in Czechoslovakia be submitted to the United States Government with a view to the promotion of general pacification in southeast Europe (840.4016/11–2946).
  2. Jan Masaryk, Czechoslovak Foreign Minister.
  3. Telegram 1280, December 6, to Budapest, stated that the Department was orally informing the Hungarian Minister in Washington that the Czechoslovak and Hungarian Governments should make every effort to settle their disagreements directly. Schoenfeld was asked to take a similar line with Gyöngyösi. (840.4016/11–2946)