File No. 763.72/3758½
The Minister in Panama ( Price) to the Secretary of State
[Received April 10, 8 a.m.]
The following is the part of the proclamation which precedes that sent in my telegram of April 7, 10 p.m. The two constitute the whole:
The Congress of the United States of America has declared that a state of war exists between that country and the German Empire and such declaration imposes upon the Republic of Panama grave and unavoidable obligations.
If any other country were affected the elemental duty of Panama would be to maintain itself within the limits of a strict neutrality, but it being a conflict in which is involved the United States of America, a nation which by virtue of a perpetual public treaty guarantees and maintains the independence and sovereignty of Panama and has constructed within Panama territory a wonderlul work necessary for the commerce of the world and whose preservation is essential for the development and progress of our country, neutrality is impossible.
Our clear and indisputable duty in this dreadful hour of human history is that of a natural ally whose very existence is linked in a perpetual and indissoluble manner with the United States of America and this is the meritorious attitude which it is incumbent upon us to adopt. And as such a situation creates danger for our country it is the duty of the Panaman people to cooperate with all the energies and resources at its disposal for the protection and defense of the Panama Canal and to safeguard the territory of the nation.
The attitude of the Panaman people was foreseen and interpreted by the National Assembly in a resolution unanimously approved on the 24th of February last and confirmed afterwards in the introductory clause and in the text of law 46 of 1917 and the moment has arrived for the executive power to act in accordance with the declaration of the supreme body of the Republic.
Exequaturs of all the German consuls canceled by decree completed to-day, defining Panama and Germany as belligerents.