124.71/11–1249: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Legation in Romania


397. In conversation Nov 21 with Magheru1 at Dept’s initiative (urtel 765 Nov 12 and previous2) Asst Sec Perkins3 (1) reviewed official visa situation, (2) reaffirmed position that each Govt shld determine personnel needs its Missions and pointed out we do not regulate size of Missions here, (3) emphasized we unwilling engage trading [Page 544] numbers of visas, (4) stated that, while recognizing right of each Govt object to a particular person, we desire prompt action on pending and future applications of assigned personnel, and (5) stressed that Dept takes serious view this situation created by Rum Govt’s failure conform to internatl practice in normal relations between two states.

Magheru said he was acquainted general lines his Govt’s position which he stated as follows: A year ago Rums informed you they consider Mission staff unnecessarily large especially as compared staff Rum Leg here. Rums disposed grant visas for replacements chosen by us “within measure.” They also do not wish trade visas and stopped issuance because, after granting four last spring, we issued none. They too take serious view situation as affecting Rum Leg here.

Perkins indicated precedence in postponement visa action just the reverse, that some of our applications pending since Oct 1948, that during 1947–48 Rums had delayed action on some eases up to six months or more, that after their authorization several visas early this year we had issued visas to Magherus and their personal servants and that, while we did not consider these by way of a trade, Rums had not subsequently acted on other applications.

Re Rum statement US staff too large, Magheru was told pending applications were for replacements of staff previously withdrawn or scheduled for transfer, but reminded also of our position that number of persons assigned to US Leg Bucharest matter for determination US rather than Rum Govt.

Attaché situation was specially mentioned, alluding to Rum assurances re acceptance of replacements but with no such agréments forthcoming and no action on visas for such replacements.

Magheru stated he would report conversation to his Govt and we cld expect reply through him or AmLeg Bucharest. He was asked in particular to report Dept’s serious view visa situation. Memo conversation pouched.

  1. Mihail Magheru, the new Romanian Minister in the United States, who presented his credentials to President Truman on September 26, 1949.
  2. The Department of State had for some time been contemplating a conversation with Minister Magheru on the question of visas for official American personnel assigned as replacements to the Legation in Bucharest. The Romanian Government had for many months delayed acting on the requests for the visas for these officials. Department of State officials discussed the visa questions with Romanian Legation representatives on June 23 (telegram 225, June 24, 1949, to Bucharest: 811.111 Diplo. 71/6–1549). Minister Rudolf Schoenfeld had a “lengthy and rugged conversation” on the matter with Romanian Acting Foreign Minister Grigore Preoteasa and Ana Toma, Secretary General of the Romanian Foreign Ministry, on July 20 (telegram 539, July 21, from Bucharest: 871.111/7–2149). Schoenfeld discussed the issue with Romanian Foreign Minister Ana Pauker on August 31 (telegram 643, August 31, from Bucharest: 124.71/8–3149). None of these conversations resulted in any development in the visa question. In the telegram under reference here, Schoenfeld renewed an earlier suggestion that the matter be raised in Washington with Minister-designate Magheru (124.71/11–1249).
  3. George W. Perkins, Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs.