February 15, 1935.
The Right Hon. Sir John Simon, M.P., Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Foreign Office, Downing Street, S.W.1,
My dear Sir John,
We are very anxious about the fate of some of our friends in Spain. In addition to the hundreds summarily executed during the period of reprisals, there were five other executions. Two soldiers, condemned to death in Catalonia, were pardoned, and six civilians who had been condemned to death in 1932 were also recently pardoned.
Senor Lerroux was good enough to give an audience on February 9th to Monsieur Vincent Auriol, a French deputy, and Monsieur Schevenels, the Secretery of the International Federation of Trade Unions. They were concerned that no further executions should be carried out, They came away with the impression that they had received from Senor Lerroux the most favourable reply possible in view of the situation in Spain and the composition of his Government. They are not without grave fears, nevertheless, as to the safety of Teodomiro Menendez and Gonzalez Pena, as it is alleged to be the intention of the Government to pardon all those condemned to death with the exception of one or two who are to serve as examples.
I understand that the trial of Teodomiro Menendez is still proceeding and that last Saturday the public prosecutor demanded a sentence of death. The trial of Gonzalez Pena is to take place, I believe, this week. If sentences of death are pronounced, the Government, if itself favourably inclined to pardon, may lay the case before the Supreme Court of Pardon, whose recommendation is submitted to the President of the Republic for a final decision.
These two men are known and beloved throughout