The Embassy of the Soviet Union to the Department of State
The Embassy of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics presents its compliments to the Department of State and has the honor to communicate the following:
On August 11, 1948 the Consul General of the USSR in New York received a writ1 from a Justice2 of the Supreme Court of the State of New York to deliver to the court of the Borough of Manhattan of the City of New York at 10:30 a. m., August 12, 1948, Oksana Stepanovna Kasenkina, who allegedly was detained and is being imprisoned.[Page 1037]
The Embassy of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics must first of all call the attention of the Department of State to the fact that the entirely inadmissible assumption contained in this document to the effect that the Consul General of the USSR could detain and imprison a citizeness of the country which he represents is incompatible with the dignity of a Soviet Counsulate, the necessity for the observance of which derives from international customs and the norms of international law.
Moreover, the delivery of said writ to the Consul General is in complete contradiction with those rights and privileges which Consulates of foreign states enjoy and should enjoy. The judicial organs of a country in which a Consul resides may not impose upon him obligations to secure the appearance in court of citizens of the country which he represents and in general any obligations whatsoever which do not relate to him personally but are in connection with his official activity.
Apart from this, the demand of the Justice could not be executed by the Consul General as he does not have the right and the possibility to compel O. S. Kasenkina—a free citizeness of the Soviet Union—to appear in a court of the State of New York.
While reserving the right to return to the question of the above mentioned fact, the Embassy of the USSR in the USA requests the Department of State to direct an appropriate communication to the Supreme Court of the State of New York, namely to the Special Session, which should take place on August 12 in the Borough of Manhattan of the City of New York.
- This writ of habeas corpus was applied for by Peter W. Hoguet, the attorney for the anti-communist organization Common Cause, Inc. It was handed to Consul General Lomakin on the steps of the Consulate General of the Soviet Union in-New York on the afternoon of August 11 by Christopher Emmet, the Chairman? of the Board of Common Cause, Inc.↩
- Justice Samuel Dickstein.↩