The Finnish Collection of Decrees 65/1918 pp.44-46.

The Senate of Finland

has upon the motion of Department of Internal Affairs, delivered the following Declaration:

To the People of Finland.

After German troops, at the request of the Government, have landed on Finnish soil to assist in expelling of Russian troops and Bolsheviks, the Government wishes to make the following generally known among the population of the country:

Although German troops will, whenever possible, to use provisions and other material they have brought with themselves, it might occur that procurement of food and other supplies will turn out to be unavoidable. As Government now urges the population willingly to fulfill the requirements that might this way arise, it will also clearly state that the State of Finland will remunerate all the materials provided for the German troops, as well as all the damages they might cause.

All requisitions for the German troops are communicated through appropriate food staff boards or other municipal authorities. All deliveries are acknowledged with a receipt, of form and content approved by the Finnish government, carrying the due signature and official seal and showing the list of the delivered goods and their values. To illustrate the type of requisitions the German troops might need, the following list is provided:

1) quarters for troops and stables for their horses;
2) food for troops and fodder for their horses;
3) all kinds of carriages and harnesses and assistant personnel to work as coachmen, guides, messangers, oars- and ferrymen, as well as for construction work on roads, railways, bridges or in fortifications, and to blockade rivers and harbours;
4) disposal of houses and buildings for military operations and for road, railway and bridge construction, allotting materials for camps and resting places and fortifications and for blockading of rivers and harbours;
5) supplying of fuel and straw for camps and resting places;
6) providing other assistance and material, which in unusual cases might be needed for military purposes, especially material for clothing and fortifications, medicines and bandaging material insofar there are suitable persons and available supplies in the municipality.

If there is no food otherwise accessible for the troops, they can make requisitions for livestock, grain, oats, hay and straw. The amount of foodstuff thus delivered in form of a purchase or requisition to the military, will be at due time returned in nature by the German High Command.

Owners of ships or boats are obliged, whenever required, to set them at disposal of the military command for war purposes. The owners are compensated for the loss of their earnings or loss of the vehicle.

To fulfill the need of horses for troops, all horse owners are at war times obliged to yield up suitable horses for war purposes. They will be remunerated with a full compensation assessed by a person with expertise on the matter. The following persons are, however, exempted:

a) state official insofar horses are needed for their official duties, as well as doctors and veterinarians in case the horses are necessary for carrying out their professions
b) mail carriers and innkeepers isofar they need horses to regular mail transportation and stagecoach service;
c) city fire brigades.

The railway administration is obliged to:

1) to furnish necessary fittings into the railway cars for transportation of troops and horses;
2) arrange transportation for troops and the material;
3) set its personnel and supplies for use in construction and operating on the railways.

The railway administration is also obliged to follow the orders of the military command in arranging, continuing, interrupting or resuming operating on the railways.

In case these orders are not obeyed, the military command is authorized to carry them out on their own decision.

In Vaasa, on April the 5th, 1918.

On behalf of the Finnish Senate:

P. E. Svinhufvud.

Hjalmar Honkanen.

Translated from the Finnish original by Pauli Kruhse (2006).

Back to the history pages.