19 SEPTEMBER 1931, Page 2

* * * * Disarmament Signor Grandi, the Italian Foreign

Minister, suggested last week that the Powers should agree to a complete armament holiday till after the Disarmament Conference. The suggestion was favourably received in several quarters. On Saturday Dr. Curtius, the German Foreign Minister, spoke strongly and frankly in the League Assembly on the need for " an appreciable and effective reduction of the armaments of the heavily-armed Powers " if Germany was to be satisfied with the Conference. His speech was interpreted as a hint that Germany might perhaps leave the League. Dr. Curtius's tenure of his office is regarded as precarious, because the majority in the Reichstag regards him as responsible for the failure of the scheme for an Austro-German economic union. He may then have spoken more candidly than he would otherwise have done. The speech was ill-received in France. But M. Laval, the Premier, and M. Briand on Saturday accepted the invitation to visit Berlin on September 27th. * * * *