838.516/294: Telegram

The Minister in Haiti (Armour) to the Secretary of State

57. Department’s telegram No. 41, June 7 [4], 4 [7] p.m.; and Legation’s despatches numbers 312, May 16, and 321, May 30.77 Committee of Chamber of Deputies appointed to examine project has decided unanimously in favor of principle of contract but is still discussing its terms. Just when committee will make its report to Chamber and the debate on the floor will begin is not yet certain. After action by Chamber project must go to Senate.

Bank here recently received telegram from Lancaster indicating that if Haitian Government made request for reasonable extension of time (contract calls for approval by the legislature before June 1) he thought request would probably be granted although he could not say so definitely until matter had been submitted to proper officials.

President Vincent informed me yesterday that Haitian Government is asking the bank for 3 months’ extension of time in which to enable the Legislature to finish discussion and he hopes vote contract.

There now seems to be little likelihood of favorable action by the Legislature prior to adjournment of our Congress. I presume, however, that our offer to conclude a treaty will hold good if the Haitian Legislature eventually passes the law of sanction although of course no action could be taken under the treaty until our Senate took action. I should, however, appreciate Department’s views on this point.78

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The President also expressed the hope that in spite of inexcusable delay in approving bank contract, which no one regretted more than himself, our Government would nevertheless still be willing to dispose of Marine Corps material as might be expected. Could the Department inform me of status of this question and what if any reply it desires made to the President.79

  1. Despatch No. 321 not printed.
  2. In reply, telegram No. 43, June 5, 1934, 7 p.m., to the Minister in Haiti, stated: “Your 57, June 5, 10 a.m., penultimate paragraph. Your understanding is correct”
  3. See telegram No. 44, June 5, 8 p.m., to the Minister in Haiti, p. 295.