The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Bingham)

No. 809

Sir: Your despatch No. 1359 of April 11, 1935, regarding modification of the customs regime in the French zone of Morocco has been received. It is observed that the British Foreign Office would be grateful for any information bearing upon this subject.

In reply, you are advised that this Government has received no official information to the effect that the French have decided to abandon their efforts to bring about a modification of the customs regime. This Government’s formal protest against the proposed system [Page 981] was lodged with the French Foreign Office by the American Embassy on April 6, 1935. As yet no reply has been received from the French Ministry. Reports received by the Department from Morocco indicate that the French are meeting with considerable opposition in the furtherance of their plan. One statement attributed to the French representative who seems to have general charge of the program was to the effect that sufficient difficulties had been encountered in the negotiations with foreign powers without having to struggle against local opposition.

You are requested to continue to keep the Department informed of any developments regarding this matter which the Embassy may receive from the British.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
William Phillips