Mr. Olney to Mr. Taylor.

No. 408.]

Sir: I inclose, for your information, copy of a dispatch No. 2586,1 from the United States consul-general at Havana, under date of September 11, communicating an extraordinary letter addressed to him by the Governor-General of the Island of Cuba, denying his right to present official remonstrance against acts whereby the rights of American citizens, under treaty and international law, may be invaded. I also inclose a copy of a note addressed, under date of the 26th instant, to the Spanish minister at this capital, setting forth the views here entertained upon the subject and the impossibility of acquiescing in the position taken by Gen. Martinez de Campos; having adopted this method of bringing the matter to attention through the agency of the Spanish minister in the hope that it may not be necessary to represent it at Madrid with the solemnity and earnestness due to the discussion of so important a question between sovereign States.

While it is not expected that you will present the issue formally to His Majesty’s Government, it may be proper for you to mention upon convenient occasion to the minister of foreign affairs that you are aware that this question has been raised by the Governor-General of Cuba, and that steps have been here taken to remove the misapprehension under which that officer apparently labors.

[Page 1212]

You may also take occasion to impress upon his excellency the importance which this Government attaches to securing for any of its citizens arrested in Cuba every safeguard of law and justice, and every right guaranteed by treaty, and that not the least of these safeguards and rights is immunity from arrest or molestation save for lawful cause, to be justified upon sufficient grounds, and to be determined in the stipulated forum of the civil courts, promptly, and with every precaution and recourse of orderly justice.

I am, etc.,

Richard Olney.
  1. Not printed.