681.003/143: Telegram

The Ambassador in France (Straus) to the Secretary of State

79. The complaints enclosed with the Department’s instruction 708 of January 1539 were yesterday discussed at length with Monsieur [Page 964] Coursier of the French Administration in Morocco upon his return from the Moroccan negotiations in Rome. He is now engaged in detailed study of the complaints and has promised to indicate those on which additional information is desirable with a view to prompt ratification [rectification?] if possible. Meanwhile he states that in the instance of a great many of the complaints (as for example the first one) it appears to have been forgotten that by an exchange of notes completed on October 20, 1917, between the Secretary of State and Ambassador Jusserand the United States did recognize the Protectorate of 1912 (Embassy presumes reference is made to correspondence on pages 1093 to 1096 of Foreign Relations of the United States for 1917). In other words Monsieur Coursier feels that while the United States is obviously entitled under the Treaty of Algéciras to economic equality with other nations including France, the circumstance seems to be ignored that the subsequent Protectorate treaty permits the institution of internal economic reforms such as the granting of concessions and contracts to companies domiciled in Morocco the advantages of which are equally open to American capital.

He states that an accord embracing the present French quota and tariff proposal has now been signed by Great Britain and that the Italian Government has just agreed40 to the proposal (signature shortly to follow) subject only to the following two reservations: (1) that for the future further tariff augmentations will not be made without Italian consent on list of a very few articles of primary interest to Italian trade and, (2) that the Italian quotas should not be reduced below the quantity of imports from Italy during the year 1933.

Monsieur Coursier is leaving for Morocco on February 7 and expresses the hope that the American Government may be disposed to telegraph as soon as possible the substance of its response to the French proposal as outlined in my telegram No. 41 [42], January 15, 6 p.m., and despatch No. 1529 of January 16, in order that at least a basis for understanding may be reached before his departure.

  1. Not printed; it transmitted a résumé of violations of Moroccan treaties by French Protectorate authorities from 1923 to 1934, a summary of which was the concern of despatch No. 1002, December 14, 1934, from the Diplomatic Agent and Consul General at Tangier, ibid., 1934, vol. ii, p. 870.
  2. See telegram No. 43, February 2, 1935, 1 p.m., from the Ambassador in Italy, infra.