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A diplomatic note is a diplomatic document presented by one state's foreign ministry to another state. It is logged (registered) at both the sending and receiving side. It may contain specific requests, policy communication, positional statements, or essentially any other message, and it may or may not be published outside of the diplomatic channel.
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Letter of protest
A letter of protest is a type of diplomatic note.
A letter of protest is written in a highly formal manner, intended to be both courteous and critical at the same time. For example, in order to express exceptionally strong anger towards a foreign government's policy, a letter of protest would say, "We condemn this action in the strongest possible terms."
It can also be used to clearly deliver various warnings to the recipient government, up to and including ultimatums. In turn some such ultimatums can be, in effect, considered a formal declaration of war by those who sent them in the event that they are ignored or flouted by the recipients. This usage is in accordance with the requirements of the Hague Convention (III) of 1907 on the Opening of Hostilities.
Commercial usage of the term
In business, a letter of protest is a communication in a newspaper intended to warn potential lenders of unpaid debts by a debtor, such as a company or sole proprietor. Getting into the "protest list" usually hurts the debtor's credit rating and leads to difficulties getting unsecured loans. As such, it is a cheaper way to punish non-payers than to sue the debtor. Furthermore, publication in a private newspaper allows earlier warning as compared to the official journal, which publishes only final verdicts from courts.
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