Mr. Dichman to Mr. Evarts.
Bogota, April 14, 1879. (Received May 20.)
Sir: The Colombian Senate having been notified by the executive of the agreement entered into between the honorable secretary of foreign relations and myself, relating to the understanding of so much of the 35th article of the treaty of 1846 as concerns the right of transit guaranteed to the Government of the United States (reference is respectfully made to article 4 of the copy of the protocol forwarded with my No. 58), the agreement was returned to the executive by the Senate without any objection, which settles the matter definitely. The debate in the Senate on the subject was quite animated, the bill of rights of the Colombian constitution, and the protection due to life and liberty being brought into the focus of the discussion; but as the whole matter had been previously explained to the majority of the senators it was found when the vote had been taken, the motion being to postpone, that while the orators of the senate enjoyed the applause of the galleries, their motion had been defeated by the silent majority. The opposition to the agreement was not a factious one, nor was it an indication of an unfriendly feeling towards the United States.
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The instructions to the Government of the State of Panama leave nothing to be wished for. They are written in the most liberal spirit towards the Government of the United States, and in my acknowledgment of the honorable secretary’s note, I have taken occasion to express my high appreciation of the same.
I trust this determines finally and conclusively the question of the right of the Government of the United States to bring prisoners across the Isthmus of Panama.
I am, &c.,