The Ambassador in Mexico (Clark) to the Secretary of State
[Received February 15.]
Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the Department’s instruction number 912 of January 27, 193319 (no file number), requesting me to obtain from the Mexican authorities for communication to the Department a statement as to the requirements of the Mexican Government covering the entry and flights of aircraft, and to request that the appropriate Mexican authorities be notified of the procedure agreed upon, this being in connection with the Habana Convention of February 20, 1928, Article 4 of which, according to the Department, contemplates that each contracting State shall in time of peace accord freedom of innocent passage above its territory to the private aircraft of another contracting State.
This matter was taken up informally yesterday by the Counselor of this Embassy with the Chief of the Diplomatic Department of the Foreign Office, and a copy of the bulletin enclosed with the Department’s instruction (Department of Commerce, Aeronautics Branch: Aeronautics Bulletin No. 7–C: Department of Commerce Regulations Governing Entry and Clearance of Aircraft Effective as Amended [Page 629] April 7, 1931, and United States Airport of Entry Regulations Effective November 1, 1931: Washington, 1931) was handed to Mr. Sierra.
Mr. Sierra stated that it was his understanding that it is the intention of the Habana Convention that American private aircraft may enter Mexico and Mexican private aircraft may enter the United States subject to compliance with the technical requirements and regulations in force in the respective countries, but without it being necessary to request permission through diplomatic channels. He added, further, that at the present time it is not necessary to obtain permission through diplomatic channels for the flights of private American aircraft to Mexico, but that it is only necessary for the interested party to obtain permission by applying direct to the Department of Communications in Mexico City.
Mr. Lane said that, as he understood the situation, such procedure would not seem to be required by the Habana Convention.
Mr. Sierra then stated that he would look the matter up and let us know in due course. In the meantime, he said, he would have the abovementioned bulletin translated and referred to the Department of Communications for its information.
The Embassy will follow this case and will report further to the Department in due course.