718.1915/747: Telegram

The Chargé in Panama (Munro) to the Secretary of State


121. Department’s telegram number 82 dated December 11, 9 p.m. I discussed in detail with Foreign Minister Department’s suggestion; but my promised interview with the President was put off from time to time for trivial reasons until it became evident that he was unwilling to discuss the matter at the present time. I then took up the question again with the Foreign Minister. He finally said that Panama was unwilling to accept the Department’s suggestion at present because they still hope Costa Rica will accept Fabrega’s proposition for straightening the boundary line. He let me see Fabrega’s latest letter which was moderately optimistic although at the time of writing Fabrega had not presented his proposition.

Although I believe that Panama would finally accept any solution which involved a concession by Costa Rica sufficient to enable the Government of Panama to defend publicly its complete change of politics regarding the White award, nevertheless, it especially wants a territorial concession which would protect Panamans owning property on the Costa Rican side of the boundary line. I doubt if the Government of Panama would seriously consider any other solution until it is convinced that a territorial concession is impossible. I think it would be more profitable to take up the Department’s suggestion when Costa Rica has definitely rejected Fabrega’s proposition. Despatch will follow.43

  1. Not printed.