811F.504/154½

The Ambassador in Panama (Dawson) to the Secretary of State

No. 88

Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Department’s instruction No. 19 of August 19, 1939 (no file number), authorizing me to transmit to the Panamanian Government a copy of the text of a statement made by President Roosevelt at the time of giving his approval to H. R. 5129.

A copy of the text of the statement was furnished the Panamanian Foreign Office with a note of August 23, and I am today in receipt of a reply dated September 2 of which I enclose a copy and an English translation.

Respectfully yours,

William Dawson
[Enclosure—Translation]

The Panamanian Minister for Foreign Affairs (Garay) to the American Ambassador (Dawson)

D. D. No. 1954

Mr. Ambassador: I take pleasure in acknowledging the receipt of Your Excellency’s courteous communication No. 53 of the 23rd instant, with which you were good enough to send me a copy of the text of the statement made by His Excellency President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the time of giving his approval to the Act of the Congress of the United States which authorizes the construction of additional facilities on the Panama Canal and provides the means therefor.

The Foreign Office has read with profound satisfaction the above mentioned statement in which President Roosevelt reminds the legislators of his country of the precedents which for over thirty years [Page 752]have guided the policy of the United States in its relations with Panamá and in particular the principle of equality of treatment between Panamanians and Americans in the Canal Zone.

This Government is confident that the statement of the President of the United States will bring about shortly the effect desired and that the American legislators will respond to the appeal made to them by the Chief Executive of that great country not to depart from the norms of justice and equity which have inspired in this respect the Public Administration of the United States nor from the commitments entered into by the Department of State with the Panamanian Negotiators, as is of record in the minutes of session No. 107 held in Washington, on February 1, 1936, at 11 a.m.

I shall be grateful if Your Excellency will be good enough to transmit to His Excellency Mr. Roosevelt the expression of the lively gratitude with which Panamá received his gallant statement, as respects both public opinion and official circles.

I avail myself [etc.]

Narciso Garay