819.011/78: Telegram

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

199. With reference to Department’s telegram 168 of November 15; my telegram 198 of November 16; and my telephone conversation of this morning with Duggan:35

The audience requested with the President for the delivery of the note was fixed for this morning. Yesterday afternoon in reconsidering several articles of the new constitution the National Assembly approved an addition to article IV reading in translation as follows: “There are recognized the jurisdictional limitations stipulated in public treaties celebrated prior to this Legislature [Legislative] Act amending the constitution.” Since the inclusion in the constitution of this provision disposed of the matter satisfactorily I told the President when I saw him this morning that if he preferred I would refrain from delivering the note. He considered this preferable and I consequently did not deliver the note. However, as reported in my telegram 198, the unsigned text was handed to the Secretary of Foreign Relations in our interview of November 16.

  1. Laurence Duggan, Adviser on Political Relations.