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Sir H. Kennard to Viscount Halifax.
(Telegraphic.) Warsaw, August 10, 1939.
MINISTER for Foreign Affairs communicated to me to-day the text of a communication which was made to Polish Chargé d'Affaires at Berlin by State Secretary yesterday and of reply of the Polish Government which was made this afternoon. (Text of these communications, which are strictly confidential and are not being published at present, will be found in my immediately following telegram.). Both these communications were made verbally though notes were taken of their contents in either case.
2. M. Beck drew my attention to the very serious nature of German démarche as it was the first time that the Reich had directly intervened in the dispute between Poland and Danzig Senate. He had already, through Polish Ambassador in London, warned your Lordship briefly of what he had communicated to me, but he asked me to request you to consider whether you could take any useful action in Berlin to reinforce Polish attitude. He would leave it to your Lordship to decide the nature of any such action, but would be glad in any case to learn your views as to the significance of this démarche on the part of the Reich. M. Beck has made a similar communication to my French colleague.
3. He further told me that the High Commissioner had communicated to him the tenor of a conversation which M. Burckhardt had had with Herr Forster this morning. Conversation was relatively moderate, and Herr Forster said Herr Hitler had told him that no incident should take place at Danzig at present time in view of gravity of the situation. Herr Forster said that he intended in his declaration which he is to make to-night to deal with aggressive tone of Polish press.
4. M. Beck finally said that he felt that a serious political crisis would develop during the last fortnight of this month, which while it need not necessarily lead to war would require very careful handling. No further military measures were being taken by the Polish Government for the moment, but he would at once inform me if they became necessary.
5. M. Beck stated that while he had not thought it necessary to refer, in his reply to the German Government, to the specific question of Polish customs inspectors, he could have refuted German allegations as the Polish Government had documentary proof that Danzig customs officials had definite instructions from authorities to inform Polish inspectors that they could no longer carry out their functions.