817.00/8287½: Telegram

The Minister in Nicaragua ( Lane ) to the Secretary of State

80. Minister for Foreign Affairs informed me yesterday afternoon that situation with regard to Somoza had reached crisis; that Executive Committee of Liberal Party together with municipalities of Masaya, Managua, Leon and Chinandega, was going to request action [Page 872] on part of President (that is, to demand Somoza’s removal as Chief of Guardia); and that prompt action must be taken by the President to request resignation of Lorenzo Guerrero, Minister of Public Instruction, who made the principal speech on September 14 advocating Somoza’s presidential candidacy.

Last evening the President informed me that it is true that there is a widespread movement on foot to persuade him to request resignations of Somoza and Guerrero. He characteristically commented that he must consider matter carefully as he wished to ascertain first whether the country is “prepared for action.” He expressed his understanding that Somoza is circulating for signature among officers of the Guardia a petition to the President requesting latter to support Somoza’s candidacy. He said that if such a request were presented he would be compelled to refuse it.