M. Le President,
The German administrative
and military authorities have established a certain number of flagrantly
hostile acts committed on German territory by French military aviators.
Several of these have
openly violated the neutrality of Belgium by flying over the territory of
that country; one has attempted to destroy buildings near Wesel; others
have been seen in the district of the Eifel; one has thrown bombs on the
railway near Carlsruhe and Nuremberg.
I am instructed, and I
have the honour to inform your Excellency, that in the presence of these
acts of aggression the German Empire considers itself in a state of war
with France in consequence of the acts of this latter Power.
At the same time, I have
the honour to bring to the knowledge of your Excellency that the German
authorities will retain French mercantile vessels in German ports, but
they will release them if, within forty-eight hours, they are assured of
My diplomatic mission
having thus come to an end, it only remains for me to request your
Excellency to be good enough to furnish me with my passports, and to take
the steps you consider suitable to assure my return to Germany, with the
staff of the Embassy, as well as, with the Staff of the Bavarian Legation
and of the German Consulate General in Paris.
Be good enough, M. le
President, to receive the assurances of my deepest respect.