481.11/129½

The Secretary of State to the Diplomatic Agent at Tangier (Blake)

No. 996

Sir: The Department is of the opinion that in view of the delay which has ensued in the negotiations of the French Government for the termination of American capitulatory rights in the French Zone of the Shereefian Empire, renewed consideration might be appropriately given to the initiation by this Government of action looking to the blanket settlement of American claims in that Zone.

Accordingly, unless some objection is perceived, you should communicate upon the receipt of this instruction with the French Protectorate authorities at Rabat on this subject. You should inform those authorities that, on the assumption they have been informed of the exchange of correspondence between this Government and the French Embassy in Washington relating to the termination of American capitulatory rights in the French Zone of the Shereefian Empire and to the settlement of American claims in that Zone, you have been authorized to approach them to arrange the details of such a settlement. Copies of the correspondence referred to were enclosed in the Department’s instructions to you, No. 966 of September 28, 1937,38 and No. 970 of October 26, 1937.39

As you were informed in the Department’s telegram of November 19, 1937,40 it is considered that a simple procedure involving agreement on the part of the French authorities at Rabat to make assessment and payment of the damages in each case and the restoration of any property concerned would meet adequately the forms of the settlement in question.

As soon as the Protectorate authorities have indicated their readiness to proceed with the negotiations for an adjustment of these claims, you should inform the Department by telegraph. At the same time you should indicate the special allotment which may be necessary for your travel and subsistence expenses and those of Translator [Page 882]Dempster and Interpreter El Khazen in connection with your sojourn at Rabat for the purpose of the negotiations.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
R. Walton Moore