250 Mr A. T. Stirling, External Affairs Officer in London, to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 141 LONDON, 9 September 1938 U.S.S.R.

French Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs [1] recently asked Soviet Ambassador at Paris [2] what help Soviet would give in the case of a German attack on Czechoslovakia. Ambassador said he would inquire of Litvinoff [3] and later gave French Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs a reply in following manner which latter communicated to British Ambassador in Paris [4] on 6th September.

(Begins). U.S.S.R. will, according to terms of Russian- Czechoslovak Pact, wait until France has begun to fulfil obligations incumbent on her according to her own Pact with Czechoslovakia. U.S.S.R. will then bring matter before Geneva.

(Ends).

French Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs said that he felt that U.S.S.R. was showing much more caution in this matter than she wished others to show. He did not think Roumania would permit Soviet aeroplanes to fly to Czechoslovakia's assistance over Roumanian territory.

STIRLING

1 Georges Bonnet.

2 Yakov Zakharovitch Suritz.

3 Maxim Litvinov, U.S.S.R. People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs.

4 Sir Eric Phipps.

[AA : A981, CZECHOSLOVAKIA 13]