NOTE FROM CHICHERIN TO LOCKHART ON BRITISH ACTION IN NORTHERN RUSSIA
12 JULY 1918
Kluchnikov & Sabanin, II, p. 156
In spite of repeated assurances by the British Government that the landing of British troops at Murmansk is not a hostile act against the Russian Soviet Republic, the British Government has not only failed to comply with our elementary demand for the withdrawal of troops from Soviet territory, but, together with French and Serbian auxiliary forces, its detachments have moved south to the interior. Soviet officials are being arrested and sometimes even shot. Railway guards are being disarmed; railways and telegraph lines are being taken over. Having taken Kem and Soroki, the British troops moved farther east and occupied Sumski-Posad, on the road to Onega. Actions of this kind by the British troops can only be considered as seizure of the territory of the Russian Soviet Republic. No other explanation can be given for the movement of the British troops eastward.
The People's Commissariat for Foreign Affairs enters a most vigorous protest against this wholly unjustifiable violation of Soviet Russian rights. We have stated, and we state once more, that Soviet troops will do everything in their power to defend Russian territory, and will offer the most determined resistance to foreign armed invasion. We would with particular urgency draw your attention to the feeling that is being aroused among the masses of Russia by the unprovoked British attack, and to the results which this growing feeling among the masses may have in the future.
Documents on Soviet Foreign Policy
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