The Acting Secretary of State to the Chargé in Cuba (Curtis)

No. 412

Sir: The Department has received your despatch No. 716 of June 13, 1929, in further relation to the arbitration of the claim of Mr. Charles J. Harrah against Cuba, and notes your statements as to the attitude of the Cuban Foreign Office with respect to expediting the matter.

The Department is unable to understand why there should be any extended delay in deciding as to the form of agreement that should be adopted as the basis of the arbitration. The President of Cuba has agreed to arbitrate the claim and the Cuban arbitrator has been designated. Inasmuch as this has been done without indicating any objection to the form of agreement submitted several months ago by the American Government, the Department considers that it is warranted in assuming that the form submitted is acceptable to the Cuban Foreign Office and that when appropriate changes have been made to meet the desire of the Cuban Government that the matter shall be examined by two arbitrators, with provisions for calling in a third one, if necessary, the Cuban Foreign Office will be prepared to sign the agreement.

Upon the informal suggestion of the Cuban Ambassador, Senor Ferrara, in a conference with Assistant Secretary White and the Solicitor, Mr. Hackworth, on July 1, the provisions relating to the selection of a third Arbitrator have been framed so as to conform as nearly as possible to the like provisions in Article 3 of the General Treaty of Inter-American Arbitration, signed at Washington on January 5, 1929.33

The Department requests that you take the matter up with the Cuban Foreign Office immediately in the sense of the foregoing and that you at the same time present to the Foreign Office the enclosed revised draft of agreement.34 You should state that your Government would be gratified if the instrument could be promptly executed, so that the actual arbitral proceedings could be begun at once. You may state that you are authorized to sign the agreement on behalf of the United States.

Please keep the Department promptly informed regarding developments.

I am [etc.]

J. P. Cotton
  1. vol. i, p. 659.
  2. Not printed.