812.53 Agrarian Commission/133

The Mexican Under Secretary for Foreign Affairs (Beteta) to the American Ambassador in Mexico (Daniels)8


Mr. Ambassador: I refer to Your Excellency’s attentive note of December 6 of last year.9

In his recent trip to this capital, Doctor Francisco Castillo Nájera, Ambassador of Mexico in the United States of North America, presented to this Ministry a detailed statement regarding his most valuable (text has “ultimas”) steps with the Department of State, a statement which I permit myself to transcribe integrally to Your Excellency:

“With reference to your telegram of December 8, 1939, and to your letter of the same date, as well as to the verbal consultations held with me in this connection regarding the scope of the statement that, on November 10, 1938,9a I made to Mr. Cordell Hull, Secretary of State of the United States, I must inform you that the statement under reference was made with a view to determining the treatment that would be received by agrarian affectations subsequent to those comprised in the agreement reached through the notes creating the Mixed Commission of Agrarian Claims. I said to Mr. Cordell Hull, that, with the authorization of my Government, I declared that affectations of lands belonging to American citizens made after the end of the work of the Mixed Commission of Agrarian Claims, would be decided as follows:

“The Government of Mexico would reach an agreement with the affected owners regarding the establishment of the amount of indemnization and the form of payment:

“That the compensation would be prompt, just and adequate:

“Finally, that if the Mexican Government and the owners should not reach an agreement, the case would bring about consultation of the Governments of Mexico and of the United States for the determination of the claimed (Spanish text: repetida) indemnization and the form of payment.

“Therefore, it is absolutely false that there existed an engagement not to make affectations, in the future, excepting with immediate [Page 955] indemnization, as is alleged by the Embassy of the United States in Mexico.

“My interpretation was discussed with Mr. Sumner Welles December 11, 1939, and later with Mr. Berle10 in a conversation of February 24 [23] of the present year; on both occasions, I left a clear expression of the scope of the cited statement, adding that the latter cannot in any way modify the agreement concluded through the notes of November 9 and 12, 1938,”11

I wish to express to Your Excellency that, in the belief of this Ministry, the statement transcribed made by Ambassador Castillo Nájera replies to the note of December 6, last, to which I referred hereinabove, and also clarifies, satisfactorily, the situation created through the several interpretations given to the conference that, on November 10, 1938, was held by His Excellency Mr. Cordell Hull and Ambassador Castillo Nájera.

I seize this opportunity [etc.]

R. Beteta
  1. Copy transmitted to the Department by the Ambassador in his despatch No. 10370, April 6; received April 8.
  2. See telegram No. 286, December 5, 1939, 7 p.m., to the Ambassador in Mexico, Foreign Relations, 1939, Vol. v, p. 661.
  3. Not printed.
  4. Adolf A. Berle, Jr., Assistant Secretary of State.
  5. For exchange of notes, see Foreign Relations, 1938, vol. v, pp. 714719.