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The Government of the United States and the Government of Greece may through their respective diplomatic representatives issue certificates of exemption from military service to citizens of the United States in Greece and citizens of Greece in the United States, respectively, upon application or otherwise, within sixty days from the date of the exchange of ratifications of this convention, or within thirty days from the date when such citizens become liable to military service in accordance with Article I, provided that the applications be made or the certificates be granted prior to their entry into the military service of either country.
Such certificates may be special or general, temporary or conditional, and may be modified, renewed, or revoked in the discretion of the Government granting them. Persons holiling such certificates shall, so long as the certificates are in force, not be liable to military service in the country in which they are.
ARTICLE IV The Government of the United States and the Government of Greece will, respectively, so far as possible, facilitate the return of citizens of Greece and citizens of the United States who may desire to return to their own country for military service, but shall not be responsible for providing transport or the cost of transport for such persons.
ARTICLE V No citizen of either country who, under the provisions of this convention, enters the military service of the other shall, by reason of such service, be considered after this convention shall have expired or after his discharge to have lost his nationality or to be under any allegiance to His Majesty the King of the Hellenes or to the United States, as the case may be.
The present convention shall be ratified by the President of the United States of America by and with the advice and consent of the Senate of the United States and by His Majesty, the King of the Hellenes, and the ratifications shall be exchanged at Washington or at Athens as soon as possible. It shall come into operation on the date on which the ratifications are exchanged and shall remain in force until the expiration of sixty days after either of the contracting parties shall have given notice of termination to the other; whereupon any citizen of either country incorporated into the military service of the other under this convention shall be as soon as possible discharged therefrom.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF the respective plenipotentiaries have signed the present convention and have affixed thereto their seals.
30th Done in duplicate at Washington the day of August in the
[SEAL] ROBERT LANSING
AND WHEREAS, the said Convention has been duly ratified on both parts, and the ratifications were exchanged in Washington and Athens, on the twelfth day of November, one thousand nine hundred and eighteen;
Now, THEREFORE, BE IT KNOWN THAT I, WOODROW Wilson, President of the United States of America, have caused the said Conven: tion to be made public, to the end that the same and every article and clause thereof may be observed and fulfilled with good faith by the United States and the citizens thereof.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. DONE in the District of Columbia this eighteenth day of November
in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and [SEAL] eighteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred and forty-third.
WOODROW WILSON By the President: ROBERT LANSING
Secretary of State.
LEGAL STATUS OF MEMBERS OF AMERICAN
FORCES IN EUROPE
[Received 11.15 p. m.] 7142. I have received under date of the 5th instant from the Foreign Office a note of which the following is the full text:
I have the honor to inform you that the competent department of His Majesty's Government have drawn my attention to certain difficulties that may be found by the United States military authorities in the maintenance of discipline among United States officers and soldiers when serving in this country owing to the existing English law relating to arrest for and the trial and punishment of offenses committed in this country.
His Majesty's Government are advised that by the doctrine of extraterritoriality organized bodies of United States troops in this country are, within the limits of the quarters occupied by them, subject to their own system of discipline and their own laws and may be dealt with by their own military authorities and may be arrested, tried, and punished accordingly. Outside the limits of their quarters, however, they are liable to be dealt with by the English criminal courts for any offenses against the English criminal law but could not be apprehended for any purely military offense (such as desertion, absence without leave, etc.) either by their own or the English military police or by the civil police, nor could they in any case legally be handed over to their own military authorities to be dealt with. His Majesty's Government are also advised that the preceding observation with regard to officers and soldiers forming part of an organized body of troops whilst outside the limits of their quarters applies equally to individual officers and soldiers not forming part of an organized body in the [this?] country. It would, I understand, be in accordance with the wishes of the United States authorities if steps could be taken to legalize the assistance of the military and civil authorities in this country in handing over to their own military authorities United States officers and soldiers who may be found outside the limits of the quarters occupied by United States troops in this country and who may appear to have committed an offense against their national military discipline or law with a view to their being dealt with by the United States military authorities.
* This telegram was referred to the Secretary of War, Sept. 17.
His Majesty's Government are advised that, if the United States authorities are desirous of such assistance as is outlined in the preceding paragraph, the best and speediest method of giving effect to such desire would consist in the passing of a regulation under the Defense of the Realm Acts, giving power to the British military authorities in general terms to make and revoke or vary orders from time to time for subjecting United States and other Allied troops in this country to their own systems of military discipline and for arresting and handing them over to their own military authorities, either in this country or abroad, in case of any alleged military or criminal offense whether such offense was contrary to English law or not. I have the honor to request Your Excellency to be so good as to inform me whether the above suggestions recommend themselves generally to the United States authorities and whether there are any special points which suggest themselves as requiring consideration in the framing of the suggested orders. In particular I should be [pleased] to learn whether, if it can be so arranged, the United States authorities would desire to have the right to retain in imprisonment in this country United States soldiers who may be sentenced by their military courts to undergo terms of imprisonment. Finally, I may point out to Your Excellency that by virture of sections 153 and 156 of the Army Act it is an offense for a civilian to assist a deserter from the British Army, and to purchase equipment from an officer or soldier of the British Army unless such equipment were sold by permission of the military authorities. I shall be grateful if Your Excellency will state whether the United States authorities would desire similar provisions to be applied as regards their troops in this country.
File No. 811.203/10
[Received October 5.] MR. SECRETARY OF STATE: My Government wishes me to draw Your Excellency's attention to the advantage there would be, considering the growing number of American soldiers in France, to conclude at the earliest possible date an agreement between our two countries on the question of penal military jurisdiction.
It occurs to it that the simplest and quickest solution could be found in the reproduction, mutatis mutandis, of the text of the declaration signed by France and England to settle the same question between themselves on December 15, 1915.
I have the honor to enclose the French and English texts of that instrument and I should be thankful to Your Excellency if you would let me know at your earliest convenience whether its terms meet with your approval. If so I would cable to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic who would exchange with the American Ambassador at Paris the notes sanctioning the agreement. Be pleased to accept [etc.]
* Only the English text printed, infra.
Declaration of the British and French Governments His Britannic Majesty's Government and the Government of the French Republic agree to recognize during the present war the exclusive competence of the tribunals of their respective Armies with regard to persons belonging to these Armies in whatever territory and of whatever nationality the accused may be.
In the case of infringements committed jointly or in complicity by individuals belonging to these two Armies, the French authors or accomplices shall be handed over to the French military jurisdiction and the British authors or accomplices shall be handed over to the British military jurisdiction.
The two Governments further agree to recognize during the present war the exclusive competence in French territory of French justice with regard to foreign persons in the British Army who may commit acts prejudicial to that Army, and the exclusive competence in British territory of British justice with regard to foreign persons in the French Army who may commit acts prejudicial to the said Army.
Nore. The above declaration should be considered as having been published in the London Gazette of the 15th December 1915.
File No. 811.203/10
The Secretary of State to the French Ambassador (Jusscrand) No. 2023
WASHINGTON, January 3, 1918. EXCELLENCY: Referring to your note of October 1, 1917, in which by direction of your Government you draw my attention to the advantages that would be derived from an agreement between the United States and France on the subject of penal military jurisdiction over the military and naval forces of one country while within the territory or limits of the other, I have the honor to inform you that I am authorized by the President, as Commander in Chief of the armed forces of the United States, to propose to you an agreement by an exchange of notes as follows:
The Government of the United States of America and the Government of the French Republic agree to recognize during the war the exclusive jurisdiction of the tribunals of their respective land