867.602 Ot 81/334: Telegram
The Secretary of State to the Special Mission at Lausanne
161. Your telegram 380 of May 29. The Department’s attitude has been substantially set forth in telegrams 22 of April 13 to Berne67 and 105 of April 20 to Lausanne,68 which you mention, and in 124 of May 4 to Lausanne. The Department has not received any copy of the concession as ratified. The Department did not have any part in obtaining the concession and believes that any conflict in claims should be settled by the interested parties among themselves and with the Governments concerned. Should Pellé insist upon bringing the matter up in the conference you may discreetly use the points emphasized by the Department in its telegrams. You should avoid a direct offer of arbitration, but stress the fact that this Government desires fair play and reciprocal regard for valid rights and that its interest is in assuring equality of opportunity.
The representations by Ambassador Jusserand, described in my 113 of April 27,69 have not been followed up, and he has not presented to the Department any data concerning the French claims which it is alleged are in conflict with the Chester concession. We wish to avoid creating the impression that the issue is one to be settled between the Governments of the United States and France. Your attitude in discouraging Pellé from making a formal written communication is therefore approved. The Department, however, would not wish to have you act in such a manner as to make it possible for Pellé to say that you had kept him from informing [Page 1215] you regarding French claims. It would be helpful if you could informally and discreetly obtain any facts regarding these claims.
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