File No. 819.77/151.

The American Minister to the Secretary of State.

No. 310.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the Department’s telegram of January 20, relative to the railways construction bill, and to inform you that, as directed therein, I immediately addressed a note to Señor Lefevre, Minister for Foreign Affairs, stating [Page 1097] that in view of its interest in the subject of the bill in question my Government desires me to request the Panaman Government to delay for a brief period the presentation of this bill to the National Assembly until my Government had been able to receive the copy of the bill forwarded by me and to give it consideration.

Señor Lefevre has subsequently informed me that although the bill had already been submitted to the Assembly before the receipt of my note, further consideration of it would be delayed as requested. Señor Lefevre added that President Porras had directed him to assure me that no railways which might be constructed under this law would cross Panaman territory from the Pacific to the Caribbean so as in any way to violate the rights granted to the United States under Article V of the Convention of 1903.

I have [etc.]

H. Percival Dodge.