860D.77/86 : Telegram

The Minister in Finland (Schoenfeld) to the Secretary of State
Helsinki, August 1, 1940—10 a.m.
[Received 2:05 p.m.]

340. The Prime Minister informed me yesterday that in pending railroad traffic agreement with the Soviet Union, Finnish Government would stipulate that each Russian train using Finnish lines to Hango would be in charge of Finnish engineer and conductor and that 24 hours' notice must be given of arrival of trains of which there should be no more than one in any 24 hours. It would also be stipulated that any troops so transported up to a specified total number should be unarmed.

Ryti added that the plan for special facilities for Russian transit had originally contemplated only commercial traffic corresponding to those granted Finland in certain Russian ports. The military scheme for traffic to Hango had emanated from the Soviets and though disagreeable to the Finnish Government the latter did not feel in view of the facilities lately granted by Sweden to the Germans over Swedish railroads that it could refuse. The experimental train referred to in my telegram number 327, July 29, was loaded chiefly with rails and material for construction of fortifications.


Source: Foreign relations of the United States. Diplomatic papers. 1940. Volume I. General. (ACTIVITIES OF THE SOVIET UNION IN  E A S T E R N  EUROPE, AND SOVIET RELATIONS WITH THE BELLIGERENT POWERS). Department of State, Historical Division, Bureau of Public Affairs, 1959. (University of Wisconsin Digital Collections)

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