852.75 National Telephone Co./341: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Spain (Weddell)

41. Your 66, April 9, 6 p.m. You should immediately renew request for interview with General Franco for the purpose of delivering to him in person the communication in the form of an aide-mémoire from this Government set forth in our no. 36 of April 2, 7 p.m. with the textual changes suggested in your no. 62 of April 4, 11 a.m.

[Page 870]

As pointed out in our aide-mémoire, assurances were given by the Spanish Ambassador in Washington on July 28, 1939, acting upon specific instructions from his Government, that the Spanish Government intended to accord to American rights and interests in Spain just and equitable treatment in accordance with the principles of international law. In requesting this interview, you should make clear to the Minister for Foreign Affairs that this Government expects that the Chief of the Spanish State, as the source of final authority, will exercise that authority to make effective without further delay the assurances previously given with respect to American rights and interests in Spain, which in the present instance requires the restoration of its properties to the control and management of the telephone company. You may add that your Government cannot believe that the statements reported in your telegram under reference represent the considered judgment of the Spanish Government.

For your guidance we wish to stress the fact that the primary consideration here involved is the restoration of the telephone properties and operating rights to the American owners in accordance with the terms of the contract with the Spanish State, and not the status of particular American employees of the Spanish Telephone Company. We fully agree with the opinion you express in this regard in the final paragraph of your no. 54 of March 28, noon.