812.52 Agrarian Commission/119

Memorandum by the Under Secretary of State ( Welles ) to the Chief of the Division of the American Republics ( Duggan )

Mr. Duggan: The Mexican Ambassador told me this afternoon that he had received a personal letter from President Cárdenas in which the President stated that Mr. Lawson had now presented to Mr. Serrano the list of American claims, but had not indicated in any way the amount claimed in each instance, nor had he presented any supporting evidence as to the validity of the claims or any other form of documentation.

President Cárdenas requested that Mr. Lawson be instructed to take up with Mr. Serrano each claim and that he be empowered to discuss informally with Mr. Serrano the amount which would be regarded as satisfactory compensation, as well as to discuss such questions as the validity of the claim, the nationality of the claimant, et cetera. President Cárdenas said that if we were going to take up for consideration [Page 949] a global payment, he did not see how this could be accomplished unless our Commissioner were prepared to discuss fully and informally with the Mexican Commissioner the details above indicated with regard to each specific claim.

Let me have your opinion as quickly as possible with regard to the procedure so suggested.

I feel, as I know you do, that the determination of this matter should be expedited as much as possible.