838.51/3110: Telegram

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

6. Following is a translation of a cable which the Foreign Minister41 has just received from Mayard:42

“Yesterday I was called to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the course of presenting our case in the controversy concerning the 1910 loan;43 the American and Commercial Relations sections declared to me, without wishing to go into the question whether the claims of the holders or our own were better founded in law and justice, that the French Government gave us until Friday, March 6, to present our precise proposals on the question of the settlement of the 1910 loan, [Page 671] without prejudice as respects the question of the decree on retail commerce which will inevitably have to be solved. They insist that I ask you for a cabled reply before Friday and say that if we do not make a proposition in this time the commercial treaty44 will be denounced. It was unequivocally made clear to me yesterday that the French Government wishes no further discussion on the contract and on the law but a discussion on our proposals for settlement. I await your instructions.”

… Foreign Minister is hoping that this report is not true. So far, I have only been able to speak to the Minister over the telephone in the premises but it is clear that he is completely surprised at this report and was quite unprepared for anything of the sort.

I shall cable further developments as they occur.

  1. Yrech Châtelain.
  2. Constantin Mayard, Haitian Minister in France.
  3. French gold loan of 1910; for text of the loan contract, see Le Moniteur, Journal Officiel de la République d’Haiti, October 26, 1910, p. 606.
  4. Commercial convention between Haiti and Prance, signed April 12, 1930; for text see British and Foreign State Papers, Vol. cxxxiii, p. 419, or Le Moniteur, August 7, 1930, p. 245. See also Foreign Relations, 1935, Vol. iv, pp. 650 ff.