B-127541, MAY 17, 1956

B-127541: May 17, 1956

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SHEA WAS AUTHORIZED TO TRANSFER FROM BAGHDAD TO WASHINGTON. THE ORDER WAS AMENDED ON DECEMBER 19. IT WAS LATER ASCERTAINED THAT HE WOULD OCCUPY UNFURNISHED QUARTERS IN WASHINGTON. HIS ORDER WAS AGAIN AMENDED ON FEBRUARY 8. WE UNDERSTAND THAT ONE TRUNK WAS SHIPPED ON DECEMBER 14. TWO CASES OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED ON DECEMBER 29. WERE CONTINUED ON THAT VESSEL FROM NAPLES TO NEW YORK INSTEAD OF TRANSSHIPMENT TO AMERICAN VESSELS AVAILABLE AT NAPLES. APPARENTLY THIS WAS DUE TO AN ADVICE OF FEBRUARY 9. YOU SAY THAT NO AMERICAN SHIP WAS AVAILABLE FOR TRANSPORTATION FROM BASRA TO NAPLES. READS AS FOLLOWS: "WHERE THERE ARE NEITHER AMERICAN SHIPS NOR FOREIGN SHIPS OPERATING DIRECTLY BETWEEN THE PORT NEAREST THE PLACE WHERE OFFICIAL TRAVEL ORIGINATES AND THE PORT NEAREST THE AUTHORIZED DESTINATION.

B-127541, MAY 17, 1956

TO MR. LOUIS F. THOMPSON, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, DEPARTMENT OF STATE:

YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 6, 1956, OF, REQUESTS OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER YOU MAY CERTIFY FOR PAYMENT THE VOUCHERS THEREWITH TRANSMITTED COVERING TRANSPORTATION, INCLUDING HANDLING CHARGES, OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF JOHN J. SHEA, A FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICER, FROM NAPLES, ITALY, TO THE UNITED STATES ON A VESSEL OF FOREIGN REGISTRY.

BY TRAVEL ORDER OF NOVEMBER 23, 1955, MR. SHEA WAS AUTHORIZED TO TRANSFER FROM BAGHDAD TO WASHINGTON, D.C., HIS NEW HEADQUARTERS. THE ORDER WAS AMENDED ON DECEMBER 19, 1955, AT HIS REQUEST TO PERMIT SHIPMENT OF HIS EFFECTS FROM BAGHDAD TO NAPLES, ITALY, FOR STORAGE. IT WAS LATER ASCERTAINED THAT HE WOULD OCCUPY UNFURNISHED QUARTERS IN WASHINGTON, AND HIS ORDER WAS AGAIN AMENDED ON FEBRUARY 8, 1956, TO AUTHORIZE FULL SHIPMENT OF HIS EFFECTS FROM BAGHDAD TO WASHINGTON. WE UNDERSTAND THAT ONE TRUNK WAS SHIPPED ON DECEMBER 14, 1955, BY RAIL FROM BAGHDAD TO BASRA AND FROM BASRA DIRECTLY TO NEW YORK BY A CARGO VESSEL S.S. STEEL SEAFARER, PRESUMABLY OF AMERICAN REGISTRY, WHICH SAILED JANUARY 14, 1956. TWO CASES OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED ON DECEMBER 29, 1955, BY RAIL FROM BAGHDAD TO BASRA AND ON JANUARY 19, 1956, FROM BASRA TO NAPLES ON THE S.S. CONCORDIA FONN, A FOREIGN VESSEL, AND WERE CONTINUED ON THAT VESSEL FROM NAPLES TO NEW YORK INSTEAD OF TRANSSHIPMENT TO AMERICAN VESSELS AVAILABLE AT NAPLES. APPARENTLY THIS WAS DUE TO AN ADVICE OF FEBRUARY 9, 1956, FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE--- BY WHOM NOT STATED--- DIRECTING "AVOID IF POSSIBLE OFF-LOADING TWO CASES ON BOARD SS CONCORDIA FONN WHICH DEPARTED BASRA 19 JANUARY FOR NAPLES.' YOU SAY THAT NO AMERICAN SHIP WAS AVAILABLE FOR TRANSPORTATION FROM BASRA TO NAPLES, BUT THAT AMERICAN SHIPS OPERATE BETWEEN NAPLES AND NEW YORK.

FOREIGN SERVICE MANUAL, PART III, SECTION 151.3C., READS AS FOLLOWS:

"WHERE THERE ARE NEITHER AMERICAN SHIPS NOR FOREIGN SHIPS OPERATING DIRECTLY BETWEEN THE PORT NEAREST THE PLACE WHERE OFFICIAL TRAVEL ORIGINATES AND THE PORT NEAREST THE AUTHORIZED DESTINATION, AND IT CAN BE DETERMINED THAT AMERICAN SHIPS ARE AVAILABLE FOR ANY SEGMENT OF THE JOURNEY, THE SHIPMENT OF EFFECTS SHALL BE BY SUCH ROUTING AND SHALL INCLUDE AMERICAN SHIPS WHERE OPERATING, REGARDLESS OF WAITING TIME. MORE THAN ONE TRANSSHIPMENT FOR THE SOLE PURPOSE OF USING AMERICAN SHIPS IS NOT REQUIRED.'

IT WAS WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE TO ISSUE RESTRICTIVE PROVISION, AS QUOTED. THE FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THE RESTRICTION IN THIS CASE, HOWEVER, RESTS WITH A THIRD PARTY IN THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE AND NOT WITH THE OWNER OF THE EFFECTS OR THE STEAMSHIP COMPANY.

YOU ARE ADVISED THAT IN THE PARTICULAR CASE THE FAILURE TO TRANSFER THE EFFECTS TO AN AMERICAN VESSEL AT NAPLES NEED NOT BE CONSIDERED AS REQUIRING DISALLOWANCE OF THE EXPENSES OF THEIR SHIPMENT. ACCORDINGLY, IF OTHERWISE PROPER, THE VOUCHERS COVERING TRANSPORTATION AND INCIDENTAL EXPENSES INCURRED IN THE USE OF THE FOREIGN VESSEL MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT. THE VOUCHERS ARE RETURNED HEREWITH.