No. 245 NAI DFA D3904

Joseph P. Walshe to James McNeill (London)
(EA. 151)

Dublin, 9 July 1924

My dear High Commissioner,

We are enclosing you herewith documents relative to proposed preliminary conference which, as far as arrangements made up to present are concerned, is to take place in the House of Commons at 2. p.m. on Friday, 11th inst.

I confirm proposals I made yesterday as to line of action to be taken, namely, that unless we are directly represented at the Inter-Allied Conference with full powers we must regard any protocol embodying the decisions of that Conference as in no way concerning or affecting us and that consequently we cannot be signatories to such protocol.

It can be pointed out that prior to signature the protocol would have to be submitted to the Oireachtas which had only very reluctantly acquiesced in the ratification of the Liquor and Lausanne Treaties, to neither of which we have been negotiatory and signatory parties and that the Oireachtas is certainly not prepared to agree to a similar line of action again.

I take it from the Prime Minister of Canada's despatch, that his attitude is identical with ours. He insists that the terms of the Imperial Conference Resolution about Treaties shall be applied and that Canada shall be represented with full powers. Presumably as a corollary to that attitude they will take up the line indicated by us and refuse signature and refuse to accept liability for any commitments intended or implied in the protocol if they are not full negotiatory parties.

The difference between our attitude and that of Canada can be put this way. Canada presumes that as the Conference is to be held she must be represented directly by a plenipotentiary, whereas we may be said to consider ourselves as not officially aware of any such conference until we have received an invitation to assist with full powers.

If the Executive Council decides on any variation of or addition to this I shall append a note here or communicate with you immediately.

Yours sincerely,
Joseph Walshe

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