Mr. Hall to
Guatemala, October 7, 1887. (Received November 3.)
Sir: I have the honor to inclose herewith a translation of a note from Señor Montnfar, in which he intimates a wish of his Government that the United States should permit their representatives in foreign countries to represent Guatemala in the absence of a Guatemalan minister or consul. The note was written under the erroneous impression, no doubt, that the diplomatic and consular officers of the United States are authorized to represent the Swiss Government in the same manner as they do their own; that is, as if holding its commissions, and as officers of the Swiss Government to conduct its negotiations in foreign countries.
Señor Montufar called upon me yesterday, and I placed before him the two circular instructions of the Department, No. 11, of the 16th of June, and No. 15, of the 15th of December, 1871, which show that the diplomatic and consular officers of the United States are merely authorized to use their good offices in behalf of Swiss citizens, with the consent of the local authorities, in countries and places where no representatives of Switzerland reside. This apparently was not what he wanted. I promised him, however, to communicate his wishes to you, as the same will no doubt have been communicated by the Guatemalan minister at Washington.
I have, etc.,