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in reserve units and in retirement, in accordance with the rates specified above, provided the German Government certifies to the rank of such Germans in each case and adheres to the statement made in its note to the Spanish Embassy of February 10, 1918, to the effect that it expressly binds itself to refund sums so disbursed at the conclusion of the war.
The foregoing provisions shall apply to the personnel of the forces of the two countries who may now or may in future be in the hands of the Government of the other country.
The Government of the United States furthermore desires that there be no distinction made as regards the treatment and pay of officers, prisoners of war, who are in the active naval or military service of its forces, whether they be on the active, retired, or reserve list.
Provided the German Government accepts the modifications to its proposal as stipulated above the Government of the United States will be glad to learn whether the German Government desires that the German nationals who have been certified by it as being included in the personnel specified in classes one and two and who were interned by the Government of the United States prior to April 6, 1918 [1917?], be given pay retroactively to cover the period from that date forward in accordance with the above schedules, and whether the German Government will bind itself to refund at the conclusion of the war all sums so disbursed.
The foregoing may be considered as supplementary to section (a), paragraph 5, of general draft of agreement forwarded under cover of Department's despatch of February 21, 1918.1
File No. 763.72114A/74
BERNE, August 3, 1918.
[Received August 4, 9.34 p. m.] 4187. Department's 1728, April 5. Pay of officer prisoners of war. I have received following reply from German Government through Spanish Embassy:
The German Government agrees to the proposals of the Government of the United States of America relative to the pay of officers who have fallen into captivity on either side. The pay to be as follows: (1) 350 marks or $83.35 monthly(a) First lieutenants, lieutenants and feldwebelleutnants
of the German Army; first lieutenants, lieutenants, halboberleutnants and halbleutnants of the German Navy.
* Post, p. 68.
(6) First and second lieutenants of the American Army
and the lieutenants (junior grade) of the Amer
ican Navy. (2) 100 marks or $95.25 monthly(a) Captains, rittmeister and higher grades of officers of
the German Army; kapitänleutnants and captains, also the higher grades of officers of the Ger
man Navy and the marine troops. (b) Captains and higher grades of officers of the Amer
ican Army; the officers of the American Navy with the rank of lieutenant (senior grade) and higher, as well as officers of the American Marine Corps
of corresponding rank. As regards the other grades referred to by the American Government as class three, for which the German Government had proposed two-thirds of the lower rate of pay for officers, while the American Government wishes to pay these grades on an equal footing with lieutenants, a definite decision is reserved which will shortly be made public. It is proposed that these grades be given in the ineantime two-thirds of the pay of the lower grade and that the regular pay of officers be put in force immediately independent of this question.
These rates of pay apply to all officer prisoners of war, regardless of whether they are active officers, officers of the reserve grade, officers of disposition or retired, or whether they are retired officers of disposition, and it applies to the same class of officers who are interned as civilian prisoners and whose rank is certified by the government of the home state.
The German Government agrees that the pay to the amount now agreed upon shall be paid for the time already passed in imprisonment in so far as the payment has not taken place at all during this time or not to the amount of the rates now agreed upon. In paying these sums, however, such sums are to be subtracted which were paid temporarily by the protecting power to the officers in place of the pay they had not received, as well as the surplus amounts which were paid by the American Government to German officers beyond the rates now fixed. The German Government undertakes that these excess payments will be refunded after the conclusion of peace.
These payments now agreed upon will be ordered as soon as telegraphic information has arrived from the American Government ihat the regulations in question in the sense of the foregoing remarks have been made for the German officers in America.
File No. 763.721144/188
WASHINGTON, September 27, 1918, 4 p. m. 3009. Your 4187, August 3. Your despatch No. 4070, August 6.1 War and Navy Departments have agreed to make payments to the categories of officer prisoners of war specified in the proposal of the German Government in accordance with the terms stated therein, pending a definite solution of this matter at the prisoners of war conference at Berne. The Department instructs you to request Spanish Embassy at Berlin to inform German Government to this effect. Advise Garrett.
* Despatch not printed.
PROPOSED REPATRIATION OF SANITARY PERSONNEL
File No. 763.72114/2801a
WASHINGTON, August 4, 1917, 3 p. m. 815. Please inquire through Spanish Embassy, Berlin, whether the German Government is disposed to consider reciprocal release of sanitary personnel including medical officers, Red Cross nurses, stretcher bearers, etc., who are now or may in future be held as prisoners by either Government. A telegram to you to this effect was drafted some three weeks ago but does not appear, from the Department's records, to have been sent. Please inform the Department whether you received such a telegram.
POLK File No. 763. 72114/2804 The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Switzerland (Wilson)
WASHINGTON, October 26, 1917, 4 p. m. 1058. Department's 928, August [September] 17, 4 p. m. Department still awaiting reply from German Government regarding reciprocal release sanitary personnel. This Government is ready to release members of German sanitary personnel held in this country and to request safe-conducts from British and French Governments as soon as favorable reply is received from German Government.
File No. 763.72114/3846
The Chargé in Switzerland (Wilson) to the Secretary of State No. 1707
BERNE, November 9, 1917.
[Received November 27.] SIR: With reference to the Department's cipher telegram No. 1058 of October 26, concerning the proposal to be made to the German Government with respect to exchange of sanitary personnel, I have the honor to report that in accordance with my telegram No. 2017 of today's date 1 I am transmitting herewith enclosed copies and translation of the reply of the German Government, transmitted to me through the Royal Spanish Legation in this city and received today. I have [etc.]
*Not printed; see Department's telegram No. 815, Aug. 4, supra.
Hugh R. WILSON
The German Foreign Office to the Spanish Embassy at Berlin III a 16782
The Government of the United States of America, through the Spanish Embassy in Berlin as intermediary, inquired of the German Government whether they were prepared to enter into an agreement by which the sanitary personnel of both sides, including sanitary officers, Red Cross nurses, etc., which are at present in the hands of one of the two states, or will in the future fall into their hands, are to be repatriated by both sides. To this the following should be noted:
The German Government as a matter of course holds the point of view of the Geneva convention of July 6, 1906, as well as that of the Hague convention of October 18, 1907, regarding the application of the principles of the Geneva convention to naval warfare. They will bring stipulations of these international agreements into execution according to their letter, as well as according to their spirit, towards the members of the sanitary personnel of the United States of America, and look forward to a statement of this kind by the Government of the United States.
According to article 9, paragraph 1, of the Geneva convention, the members of the sanitary personnel there mentioned, who fall into the enemy's hands, may not be made prisoners of war; according to article 12, they must be sent back to their army, or to their home country as soon as their aid can be dispensed with. Article 10 of the above-mentioned Hague convention contains similar stipulations regarding the clerical, medical and hospital personnel of captured vessels.
The German Government, therefore, proposes to the Government of the United States of America the repatriation of all sanitary personnel of army and of navy held by either state, or which will in future be held by either state, on the following basis:
Persons comprised under the class of sanitary personnel, according to articles 9 and 10, of the Geneva convention, to wit: doctors, pharmacists, male nurses, stretcher bearers, chaplains, officers of sanitary administration, members of recognized and authorized relief societies, as well as doctors' orderlies, administrative officers of the sanitary service, and similar persons will be repatriated; in accordance with article 14 of the convention also, the officers and other convoy personnel of movable sanitary formations, as well as the religious, medical and hospital personnel of captured ships as stipulated in article 10 of the Hague convention regarding the application of the principles of the Geneva convention to naval warfare.
Within the assumption that the Government of the United States of America will agree to the preceding propositions, the German Government expresses the expectation that the Government of the United States of America will repatriate the sanitary personnel of the crews of the interned German war vessels which have fallen into its hands, and have been interned by them, as well as the sanitary personnel of Tsing-Tau imprisoned by them at Hot Springs, North Carolina, and that it will grant them a safe-conduct for their return to Germany.
As regards the sanitary personnel of Tsing-Tau, it is pointed out that the British Government in article 15 of an agreement, of which a copy is enclosed, with the German Government regarding war and civil prisoners, allows the return to Germany of the German sanitary personnel originally belonging to the German garrison in Tsing-Tau, and now in the United States of America, if the Government of the United States will allow this personnel the return to Germany. A roster of the German sanitary personnel of Tsing-Tau is annexed.
As soon as the Government of the United States of America shall have accepted the above propositions and given its assurances for a safe-conduct for the repatriation of the German sanitary personnel to Germany, the German Government will allow the departure for America of the American sanitary personnel held by it at this time.
The German Government does this in the expectation that the repatriated persons, after their return, shall by both sides be used only for sanitary service and expects a statement on the part of the American Government assenting to this proposal.
The German Government furthermore adds an exhibit of the official position and pay of those who belong to the personnel described in article 9, of the Geneva convention, in the German Army beginning with the Surgeon General down. According to article 13 of the Geneva convention, the rates of pay therein stated furnish the principles for the remuneration of the American sanitary personnel which has fallen into German hands. The German Govern
*Not found in files.
? Not printed.