File No. 851.3333

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in France ( Sharp )1


2554. Minister at Montevideo cabled Department August 15,2 that French Minister informed him that he had instructions from his Government to ask permission of Government of Uruguay for entrance into all Uruguayan ports of vessels of French Navy and that permission was desired without reference as to restrictions of time or purpose. French Minister also stated that similar instructions had been received by British Minister and that both he and British Minister had been directed by their Governments to request that he cooperate with them in placing their requests before Government of Uruguay. French Minister stated that he was advised that Government of United States had instructed American Minister to cooperate. American Minister having received no such instructions so informed French Minister and advised him that he could not assist him and his British colleague without instructions. He further advised him that he did not believe such request by French and British Governments should be made at this time.

The Minister informed the Department in his cablegram that he was thoroughly acquainted with feeling of Government of Uruguay [Page 317] on this subject, and that he had heard that such a request as referred to by French Minister would not be granted at this time. He states that he has information that policies pursued by British and French representatives in Uruguay have not met with favorable consideration. He further states that if the representatives of the above-mentioned Governments will let matters rest, diplomatic conditions will assume a more favorable attitude.

In view of foregoing you are instructed to take up matter orally with Government to which you are accredited and suggest that instructions be sent to its representative in Montevideo to take no further action in this matter at this time.

The Uruguayan Executive decree provided that “No American country which in defense of its own rights should find itself in a state of war with nations of other continents will be treated as belligerents.”

  1. The same, on the same date, to the Ambassador in Great Britain, No. 5317.
  2. Not printed.