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Department of State bulletin (Volume v. 22, Apr- Jun 1950) online

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to advise the Embassy of the United States of
America of the following facts in connection with
the flight of three Czechoslovak aircraft and with
their landing on a United States military airport
in Germany :

The flight of three Czechoslovak airplanes car-
rying out regular civilian transport on inner-state
lines from Brno, Ostrava, and Bratislava to Praha
was an action prepared beforehand by a terrorist
group of marauders. This action of a flight across
the state frontiers, which had been agreed to and
prepared beforehand was carried out by commit-
ting penal acts qualified as criminal by the exist-
ing Czechoslovak laws as well as by the laws of all
civilized states.

Of the crew of the first of the mentioned planes
Vit Angetter and Kamil Mraz. both former mem-
bers of the British Air Force, forced the pilot with
loaded revolvers to change the direction of the
flight. "UHien the pilot was reluctant to comply
they violently removed him from his seat and tied
him up. They did the same to the remaining two
members of the crew. In this way they committed
the penal act of endangering the lives of the mem-
bers of the crew and of the passengers [Section
33.5 of the Penal Code], the unjustified limitation
of personal freedom [Section 93 of the Penal Code]
and of dangerous threatening [Section 09 of the
Penal Code]. Moreover, they committed the act
of violently kidnapping Czechoslovak citizens and
carrying them over the frontier [Section 90 of the
Penal Code] and this of the members of the crew
as well as of the passengers with the exception of
those few people, with whom they had been in
agreement beforehand. All the above-mentioned
therefore committed criminal acts according to
existing Czechoslovak laws.

As the place of crime was on board of a Czecho-
slovak airplane, these crimes were committed on
Czechoslovak sovereign territory.

In both further cases the members of the group
of marauders acted similarly and committed the
same crimes.

In the airi)lane on the route Ostrava-Praha the



members of the crew Captain Svetlik and the em-
jiloyee of the Czechoslovak Airlines Viktor
PoDelka, both former members of the British
Air Foire, violently forced the pilot to change the
direction of the fliglit. AVlien the latter resolutely
refused to comply, they tied him up and with the
helj) of "robot" construction directed the flight
toward the American occupation zone in Germany.
They then tied up the remaining members of the
crew, the mechanic and radio-telegraphist. In this
way they committed penal acts qualified accord-
ing to Czechoslovak law as penal acts of endanger-
ing the lives of the crew and of the passengers
[Section 33,5 of the Penal Code], and as unjustified
limitation of personal freedom [Section 93 of the
Penal Code] and as dangerous threatening [Sec-
tion 99 of the Penal Code] and the penal act of
violently kidnapping Czechoslovak citizens and of
carrying them over the frontier [Section 90 of
the Penal Code], and this of the members of the
crew as well as of the passengers with the excep-
tion of one person, who was in agreement with the
aforementioned.

In the third plane flying on the route Bratislava-
Praha the members of the crew Captain Oldrich
Dolezal, Borivoj Smid, Stanislav Sacha, and Jan
Kralovansky, through their beforehand agreed-
upon action, committed criminal acts, qualified ac-
cording to existing Czechoslovak laws as the penal
acts: of endangering the lives of the passengers
[Section 335 of the Penal Code] and of their vio-
lent kidnapping [Section 90 of the Penal Code]
with the exception of two of the passengers who
had beforehand been in agreement with the perpe-
trators of this action.

Both these latter cases took place on board of
Czechoslovak airplanes, therefore on Czechoslovak
sovereign territory.

The above-mentioned facts confirmed by the
victims of the kidnapping in their capacity of eye
witnesses form the factual basis of penal acts quali-
fied according to existing Czechoslovak laws as
criminal acts. As these crimes were committed on
board of Czechoslovak airplanes, representing
Czechoslovak sovereign territory, the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs requests the Embassy of the United
States of America that :

Vit Angetter, Kamil Mraz, Vladimir Svetlik,
Viktor Popelka, Oldrich Dolezal, Borivoj Smid,
Stanislav Sacha and Jan Kralovansky

be extradited to the Czechoslovak authorities as
common criminals for penal prosecution.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs avails itself
of this opportunity to renew to the Embassy of the
United States of America the assurance of its con-
sideration.

Praha, March 30, 1950



The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has the honor
to advise the Embassy of the United States of
America of the following facts concerning the



April 17. 1950



597



flio-ht of three Czechoslovak aircraft and their
landing on a United States military airport in
Germany :

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs mainly wishes
to point out the attitude of the American occupa.-
tion authorities in Germany toward Czechoslovak
citizens as well as toward the whole of this clear

matter. ^ . - i • i

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs further wishes
to advise of the facts pertaining to the interro-
o-ation of Czechoslovak citizens on the territory
occupied by the United States in Germany and
this as well as to its antilegal character and its
whole manner and form.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs points out tacts
proving the absolute unwillingness of the Ameri-
can authorities toward a rapid and smooth settle-
ment of the whole matter :

The Czechoslovak Consulate General in Munich
was advised by the American occupation adminis-
tration of the arrival of three Czechoslovak air-
planes carrying on board Czechoslovak citizens,
kidnapped against their knowledge and volition
over Czechoslovak frontiers, only 36 hours after
their having landed on the United States military
airport at Erding. The Ministry further points
out the intentional delays and obstructions which
the Czechoslovak Consul General in Munich met
with, this in the matter of contacting the kid-
napped Czechoslovak citizens— he was only able
to do so 8 hours after having been advised of
their arrival— as well as in the negotiations con-
cerning their return to the Czechoslovak Eepublic,
when the American authorities without reason re-
fusecl to give their permission for their return on
a regular collective passport issued by the Czecho-
slovak Consulate General, and while realizing that
travelers on inner-state lines do not carry pass-
ports, they were only willing to grant permission
to leave on individual passports.

The Ministry protests against this attitude and
way of acting of the organs and authorities of the
United States.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs further ex-
presses its surprise and regret at the fact that the
criminal agents of the attack and of the mass kid-
napping, at their arrival, were not held by the
American security organs as might have been
expected in every civilized country, but that on
the contrary they were given a friendly welcome
and that they were treated much more favorably
than the victims of their crimes.

As far as the interrogation of the kidnapped
Czechoslovak citizens is concerned, the Ministry
of Foreign Affairs mentions the following facts
concerning its antilegal character as well as its
form and manner.

No legal basis or presuppositions were given for
the interrogation of Czechoslovak citizens, not
even according to United States laws. The
Czechoslovak citizens were brought into Germany

598



against their own volition and knowledge by the
criminal action of a few individuals. They imme-
diately declared that they wished to return home
instantly. They therefore found themselves in
this situation involuntarily and they had no in-
tention of entering territory occupied by the
United States of America, nor of remaining there.
They therefore should not have had to undergo
interrogation. The fact that they underwent in-
terrogation represents an antilegal act on the part
of the American organs and authorities.

As far as the manner and the form in which the
interrogation was carried out are concerned, as
well as the manner in which the kidnapped Czecho-
slovak citizens were treated, the Ministry of For-
eign Affairs mentions the following facts :

The interrogation was not carried out by regular
security organs of the American Occupation Ad-
ministration, but by members of the CIC. Dur-
ing the interrogations they asked Czechoslovak
citizens about circumstances that had no connec-
tion whatsoever with their involuntary landing
and presence on territory occupied by the United
States of America.

Karel Nejepinsky, Jan Eeznicek, Leopold Thur-
ner, and others were particularly asked about their
employment in the Czechoslovak Republic, about
the branch of their work, and the manner of its
execution, about their political adherence, about
military conditions in Czechoslovakia, about
their superiors and about a whole lot of details
concerning the activity of all those being interro-
gated. They were asked whether they wished to
remain in Germany as refugees and when they
declared that they wished to return home, efforts
were made to persuade them not to do so.

When the Czechoslovak citizens proudly insisted
in their initial attitude, the interrogators changed
their manner and proceeded to use threats and
other forms of pressure. They particularly exer-
cised pressure on the members of the crews, who
resolutely insisted on their return. At the begin-
ning they promised them well-paid jobs, they \yere
persuading them to stay, then they tried to intimi-
date them and finally used threats should they
wish to return.

As far as the form of interrogation is concerned
it is necessary to mention the case of Vaclav Kolar.
He was interrogated in a manner which had lastly
shown itself in the methods of interrogation of the
infamous criminal Gestapo. During the interro-
gation he had to stand with his arms raised and
with his face toward the wall. The reason for this
was that Vaclav Kolar had protested against the
manner in which the American organs treated
Czechoslovak citizens.

In order to complete the picture, of how Czecho-
slovak citizens were treated, it is necessary to point
out that the luggage and personal documents of all
Czechoslovak citizens wishing to return home were
antilegally taken away from them and they had
to undergo a personal examination. Their lug-

Deparfmenf of State Bulletin



tjage ami ilocuinents also were (horuuglily exaiu-
iiied. Tliese were returned to them in a disordered
state in spite of many i>rtos(s ami after a lenirtliy
Jiroeedure only shortly before their departure for
Czechoslovakia on Tuesday morninii. the i!Sth of
this month. The investifiatinfi organs did not
stop at violatiiiir rip;iits coneerninfi; human free-
dom, ineludiufi the limitation of personal liberty.

Two particularly marked cases are a proof of
tlie violation of personal freedom and projjerty.
The Member of rarliament for the Czechoslovak
Socialist Party, Antonin Fiala, had his parlia-
mentary card taken awa\' from him tou:ether with
all his other documents. All the slicets were torn
out of this card, and he was only i-eturned the
cover. The torn-out sheets were then returned
to him torn up together with the other things
which had been taken away from him.

The second marked case is that of Karel Neje-
pinsky. Nejepinsky refused to leave Czechoslovak
sovereign territory — he did not wish to leave the
Czechoslovak airplane. Although they had not
the slightest reason for this action and mainly no
right to do so, the American organs dragged him
out of the airplane b}' violence. By being handled
in this way he was wounded in the hand, and his
coat was torn. In spite of the protests of his
fellow travelers he was separated from them and
antilegnlly and without reason deprived of his
personal freedom and lield in prison. During the
interrogation which again was carried out with
unheard of methods, he was forced to undergo a
personal examination and all his effects were taken
away from him. When he refused to reply as to
his activity in Czechoslovakia, about his job, about
the conditions of the enterprise in which he
worked, he was threatened with being sent into a
camp where there would be Germans who had
been transferred from Czechoslovakia and with
being put under the supervision of a German Com-
mander who had purportedly also been transferred
from Czechoslovakia. Then the German who was
supposedlj' the commander of the camp with which
they threatened Nejepinsky was called into the
interrogation, and in the presence of the American
organs began to interrogate Nejepinsky as to his
attitude toward the transfer of Germans from the
Czechoslovak Republic. Wlien Nejepinsky re-
plied that he agreed with the transfer and this
was carried out not only in accordance with but
directly on the basis of the decisions taken by the
three Great Powers at Potsdam, the interrogators
started again to threaten him and he was taken to
prison imdei- armed guard.

In prison the interrogations were repeated sev-
eral tmies. He was only released from prison at
the intervention of the Czechoslovak Consul Gen-
ei'al, who personally went to the prison in question.
His i^ersonal property was returned to him in a



disordered state at the same time when the prop-
erty of the other Czechoslovak citizens was re-
turned to them.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs protests most
strongly — first against the antilegal act of the in-
terrogation of Czechoslovak citizens, and particu-
larly against its form and manner. The Ministry
protests most strongly against the manner in which
the occupation authorities and organs of the
United States treated Czechoslovak citizens, in
this way violating the most fundamental hunum
rights. This form is in contradiction to and vio-
lates the most fundamental rules of international
law and is only a too actual reminder of the meth-
ods of the Gestapo.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs further de-
mands the punishment of those executive organs
which committed the actions mentioned in the
present note, who abused their position and ofiice
and in this way made use of the state of distress
of Czechoslovak citizens.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs avails itself
of this opportunity to renew to the Embassy of the
United States of America the assurance of its
consideration.

Praha, March 30, 1950.



Passports To Be Issued
for Travel to Yugoslavia

[Released to the press April 4]

In view of the understanding reached with
Yugoslavia which became effective on April 1,
1950, clarifying the status of American citizens
of Yugoslav origin who visit that country, the
Department of State announced today that Ameri-
can passports will now be freely issued for travel
to Yugoslavia.

Under the new agreement, which has been made
with Yugoslavia, that country will readily grant
exit permits to American citizens of Yugoshiv ori-
gin who are in possession of American passports
bearing Yugoslav visas. Persons to whom Amer-
ican passports are issued for travel to Yugoslavia
should apply to a Yugoslav consul for a visa. This
is particularly true of American citizens of Yugo-
slav origin. This latter category should not im-
dcrtake to travel to Yugoslavia with other than
American documentation. If they are dual na-
tionals, that is, persons who possess ])oth American
and Yugoslav nationalit}', they should not provide
themselves with Yugoslav passports.

The Department and American Foreign Service
officers abroad are discontinuing the use of the
restrictive stamp which had the effect of invalidat-
ing the documents for travel in Yugoslavia.



April 17, 1950



599



Greece Urged To Increase Productive Capacity



[Released to the press April 4]



The following is the text of a note sent hy Ambassador
Henry F. Orady on March SI, 1950, to Prime Minister
Sophocles Venizelos:

Excellency : I feel obliged to bring to the atten-
tion of yourself, the new Parliament, and the
Greek people the fact that a critical period has
been reached in the recovery of Greece. American
aid was designed not only to help establish peace
but to meet the basic needs of the people for food
and clotliing. It was intended also to create new
productive enterprises which, by employing more
fully the willing labor of the people and the nat-
ural resources of the country, would improve the
lot of the people and would render Greece inde-
pendent of foreign aid in the future.

The first two objectives, those of military se-
curity and relief from disti-ess, have been attained.
The physical reconstruction stage of Greek recov-
ery has proceeded well. But the effort to make
Greece self-sustaining and independent of foreign
aid, to develop a power program, to establish new
industries, and to improve agriculture, has hardly
begun. This results partly from the tragic guer-
rilla war. But it should also be frankly recog-
nized that an important reason for the delay has
been a less than satisfactory performance by the
Greek Government in its conduct of economic af-
fairs. Only 27 months remain in which the Greek
Government may take advantage of the Ameri-
can aid made available through the Marshall
Plan. This short time permits no further delay.

It seems to me self-evident that the Greek people
are most anxious to improve their economic posi-
tion but that this can be accomplished only by
increasing the productive capacity of the country.

I believe that this desire for economic better-
ment was a paramount consideration of the Greek
people when, on March 5, they chose a new parlia-
ment in free elections that won the respect of the
entire democratic world. Tlic American represen-
tatives in Greece have scrupulously refrained from
any attempt to influence either the outcome of the
election or the formation of a new government
based on this fresh mandate of the people. The



American people, however, are entitled to expect,
and do expect, that any Greek Government which
hopes to continue to receive the aid which they
have generously offered will utilize this assistance
to tlie fullest degree. In my opinion, only a stable
and efficient government supported by the people
and by Parliament will be able to act with the
courage and the firmness of long-term policy
which are essential to the wise use of the aid of-
fered by the American people. Irresponsible talk
of adjourning Parliament or of new elections, be-
fore the new Parliament had had an opportunity
to rise to its responsibility, can only create a cli-
mate of political and economic uncertainty which
may do grave damage to the country's future.

The undertaking of a program of large-scale
investment, which must necessarily be compressed
into a short period of time, will present many prob-
lems which can be solved only by a gbvernment
which has a consistent policy and which is pre-
pared to act with great courage. Temporary
sacrifices must be made for the sake of future bene-
fits. Many of these sacrifices will be unpopular
with local minorities, especially if the people are
not convinced that the sacrifices are being equally
shared. If funds are to be available for financing
an ambitious program of new electric power
plants, new industries to provide employment,
and the irrigation and improvement of the land,
then rigorous economy in other government ex-
penditures will be essential.

It will be necessary to continue the planned re-
duction of the armed forces, to curtail subsidies,
and to make many other saving.s. I am confident
that, if the issues are properly presented to the
people, they will readily choose new opportunities
for employment in preference to special privileges
which canonly result in continuing budget deficits.
Nevertheless, these will not be easy decisions, and
only a government which can secure and maintain
public confidence by its boldness and by its devo-
tion to tlie ])ublic interest can be expected to exe-
cute the reconstruction stage of Greek recovery.
We earnestly hope the Greek Government wiU meet
this challenge.



600



Department of State BuUetin



The chief of the ECA mission to Greece and I are
in complete accord that, pursuant to the obliga-
tions imposed upon us by the Congress of the
United States, we cannot conscientiously approve
the conunitment of American funds for contem-
plated new i)rojects until tlie Greek Goveriunent
lias made basic and binding decisions which will
assure the success of the purposes for which the
funds are intended. Foremost among these proj-
ects are those which contemplate the construction
of four new electric power plants wluch would
more than double the present generation of elec-
tricity in Greece and which would bring cheap
electric power to many areas of Greece foi- the
first time. The desirability of these new plants
is beyond question. They are the keystone to the
further industrial and agricultural development of
Greece.

When Mr. Porter was recently in Washington,
he received the apjiroval of EOA headquarters for
tlie allotment of American aid necessary to their
construction, subject to the judgment of the Amer-
ican mission here as to the financial capacity of the
Greek Government to embark on a program of this
magnitude. The hard truth, however, is that,
while the dollars and other foreign exchange
neecled for the electric power program are avail-
able, the Greek Government, at the present time,
does not have the drachmae to pay the local costs
of construction. The drachmae which should be
available for this purpose are presently required
to meet the deficit in the government budget which
results from excessive spending.

Whether or not all or some of the contemplated
power plants can be begun in time to take advan-
tage of American aid is a matter that depends
solely upon decisions to be made by the Greek
Government and the Greek Parliament within the
next few weeks. The decisions which need to be
made are of two kinds. The first are those which
relate to the adoption of an adequate financial plan
which the government will follow. The second
are those which should result in a wide and far-
reaching improvement in government efficiency.

An adequate financial plan should include meas-
ures which will sharply curtail government spend-
ing on current account, including the armed forces,
in order to provide funds for capital investment.
The financial plan should establish a ceiling on the
debt which the Government may incur by borrow-
ing from the Bank of Greece or by other means.
No change in this debt ceiling should be possible
without express authority of Parliament. Sub-
sidies should be curtailed. Government enter-
prises, such as the state-owned railways which
are a drain on the budget, and the Agricultural
Bank, which incurs a deficit in spite of excessive
charges to farmers for fertilizer and for loans,



should be put on a self-supi)orting basis, while, at
the same time, reducing costs to the users of their
services.

The tax system should be simplified and ration-
alized, and ta.xes due should be fully collected, to
the end that government revenues will be in-
creased, the investment of private capital will l)e
encouraged, and social justice will result from
each citizen i)aying his fair share of taxes. A
major improvement in government efliciency is
essential to a proper administration of the aid
which is offered. The improvement should include
the establishment of a Cabinet with a niininnun
of government Ministries, a greater decentraliza-
tion of responsibility to nionarchs, and the enact-
ment of a civil service code to replace the one
recently declared invalid because it had not re-
ceived parliamentai-y approval.

In order to foster self-help and local initiative,
it is advisable that elections of local officials, which
have not taken place for 14 j'ears, should be con-
sidered for the very near future. To administer
whatever electric power program that maj' be un-
dertaken, a special agency should be established,
independent of politics, and with a tenure for its
officials long enough to cover the period of con-
struction and initial operation.

The foregoing measures, which we regard as
essential to the successful fulfillment of a major
capital investment program, should, it seems to
me, be proposed by the Greek Government to the
Parliament at the earliest possible date. The Par-
liament, of course, may modify, enact, or reject all



Online LibraryUnited States. Dept. of State. Office of Public CoDepartment of State bulletin (Volume v. 22, Apr- Jun 1950) → online text (page 19 of 116)