The Secretary of State to Minister Dawson.

No. 87.]

Sir: Referring to your telegrams of the 23d and 27th ultimo, already confirmed, I inclose for your information copies of the notes exchanged between the Colombian and Panaman ministers at this capital concerning an alleged declaration by the Panaman minister as to the meaning of the words “región de Jurado.”

These copies were given to the department by the Colombian Legation.

It is unnecessary to reiterate the ardent hope of this Government that these treaties may be ratified at the earliest practicable moment.

For your own information I will add that the department does not at the present moment feel called upon to express any formal opinion as to the interpretation of the boundary situation between Colombia and Panama.

I am, etc.,

P. C. Knox.
[Inclosure 1—Translation.]

The Colombian Minister to the Panaman Minister.

My Dear Mrá Minister: It is necessary for me to write to Bogota preparing the road for the arbitration we have agreed upon, and it should be most gratifying to me if Y. E. would do me the favor to ratify in writing the words that you employed referring to this at the time we were finishing the discussion on the treaty. I refer to our having agreed to avoid any description of the territory subject of dispute, which might come to darken the deliberations of the tribunal, and having asked what Y. E. understood by the words “region de Jurado,” you answered in these or similar words: “As minister of Panama, and a signatory to this treaty, I must state that in my opinion what is called “region de Jurado” is bounded toward the east, to wit, toward Colombian territory, by the course of the River Jurado.” And that in consequence we did agree to accept in the writing of the treaty the words “region de Jurado.”

I beg Y. E. to excuse my troubling you and assuring Y. E. of my sincere thanks for a gratifying reply. I, etc.

Enrique Cortes.
[Page 394]
[Inclosure 2—Translation.]

The Panaman Minister to the Colombian Minister.

No. 3.]

My Dear Mr. Minister and Esteemed Colleague: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your excellency’s kind note of the 1st instant, requesting the ratification of certain declarations which I made by word to your excellency before the signature of the treaties between our respective countries respecting my opinion as to what is mentioned in the treaty as the Jurado region. (La region de jurado.)

Your excellency will remember that on giving my opinion as to what I considered was comprised within “la region de Jurado,” I pointed out to your excellency that I was ready to reiterate my words in case that if at the time of submitting the question to arbitration any dispute should arise between the arbitrators touching what is called in the treaty as “la region de Jurado.” I am ready to fulfill this declaration when the circumstances require it; I truly regret not to do it at this moment, as I consider it premature since no question has yet been risen about the interpretation of the words “la region de Jurado.”

The facts that the treaties between Colombia and Panama, the United States and Panama, and Colombia and the United States have not yet been ratified by all the countries, and that the ratifications have not been exchanged yet, has also influenced upon my mind not to accede to your excellency’s wishes.

Accept, etc.,

C. C. Arosemena.