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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1937. The British Commonwealth, Europe, Near East and Africa

Liberia,   pp. 785-857 PDF (27.0 MB)

Page 819

ment that Regulation 1 of Administrative Circular No. 5, 1937 would,
if enforced, prove a great inconvenience and sometimes hardship to
those representatives of foreign powers who enjoy the privilege of
free entry at Liberian ports. The American Minister, as Doyen of
the Diplomatic Corps, transmitted the resolution to the Secretary
of State.
  A few days later the American Minister informally discussed with
President Barclay the objections which the members of the Diplomatic
Corps raised against the regulation in question. At the time the
President admitted that the argument advanced by me contained
merits and asked if I would incorporate my views in an informal
note and send to Secretary Simpson. This was done. A copy of the
communication is enclosed.3'
  Two months have elapsed since I transmitted this note to the Depart-
ment of State. Upon inquiring what disposition the Liberian Govern-
ment had made of the Diplomatic Corps' protest, I have been
repeatedly informed that the matter is still under advisement.
  On October 26, there was brought to Monrovia by an English
mail boat 13 volumes of the League of Nations Treaty Series for the
American Legation. When a representative of the American Legation
presented the signed entry slip on which was typed: "I hereby certify
that the above goods are for the American Legation or for my personal
use" signed by me and bearing the official seal, the Collector of
Customs refused to release the books stating that it would be necessary
to sign the new regulation as provided by Administrative Circular
No. 5, 1937.
  The American Minister took the position that the old phraseology
was -sufficient; he saw no reason why he should certify that the books
"would not be sold, exchanged or transferred to persons who are not
entitled to free entry privileges." He accordingly transmitted a for-
mal note to the Department of State on the subject.
  The following day the American Legation was informed by the
Parcel Post Clerk that the Customs Department waived the certifi-
cation on the baggage slip. Thereupon the Legation received books
without making any certification whatsoever.
  On November 3, an English cargo boat brought to Monrovia four
cases of official stationery for the American Legation which had been
transmitted by the Department of State at Washington. The Ameri-
can Minister signed the certificate to the effect that the goods were for
the Legation or for his use. Upon presentation of entry the Collector
of Customs refused to turn over the goods, declaring he had received
explicit instructions from the Financial Adviser that the American
Minister would have to sign the new regulation.
'1Not printed.

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