No. 261 NAI DT S1801J

William T. Cosgrave to Ramsay MacDonald (London)

Dublin, 3 August 1924

Dear Mr. Prime Minister,

Immediately on my return this morning, I held a lengthy consultation with my colleagues regarding the matters which we discussed yesterday.1

The draft Agreement supplementing Article 12 of the Treaty was considered and meets with our approval. I was accordingly authorised to affix my signature to it on behalf of the Government of the Irish Free State. When the Dáil reassembles on the 12th inst., we will introduce the legislative measure necessary for its ratification, and press it to a conclusion.

My colleagues and I have given earnest consideration to the representations made to me that as the British Parliament would in the ordinary course adjourn this week it would meet the convenience of His Majesty's Government that the corresponding legislation in that Parliament, which you are introducing on Wednesday next, should await the reassembly of Parliament in October for the completion of its remaining stages. This course does not commend itself to us.

I have already in previous communications acquainted you of the grave apprehensions which have been aroused in this Country by the delays that have occurred in giving effect to Article 12 of the Treaty. Recent developments have not tended to allay these apprehensions. Suggestions have been made in the Dáil and elsewhere that faith is not being kept with our people, and my Government would fail in their duty were they to acquiesce in any proceeding which would tend to aggravate feeling of this nature. Any avoidable delay in dealing with the problem which now confronts His Majesty's Government would certainly increase dissatisfaction and foster distrust, and we accordingly urge most strongly upon you in the interests of both Countries that a prompt settlement of this matter is imperative.

I must therefore on behalf of my Government earnestly represent to you that it is essential that the legislation requisite on the part of His Majesty's Government to give effect to our Agreement shall be enacted before Parliament rises.

Sincerely Yours,
[signed] L.T. MacCosgair

1See above No. 259.

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