800.85/642: Telegram

The Ambassador in Colombia (Lane) to the Secretary of State

832. My 824, June 22, 3 p.m.85 The President sent for me today to inquire whether I had any reply from the Department as to when the crews of the two tankers may be expected. I was obliged to reply in the negative.

The President said that his assurances of the past are still binding but that as he would prefer the transaction not to be between the two Governments he suggests that the transfer be made from the Federación Nacional de Cafeteros, acting as trustee, to the United States Maritime Commission. He is prepared to suggest the transaction at any time agreeable the United States Government. (Exchange of notes mentioned in the Department’s 524 May 6, 10 p.m. has never been received by this Embassy.) The President again emphasized desire to turn over the tankers without any publicity being attached until they have left Colombian waters. For this reason he emphasizes the necessity for keeping the matter including the arrival of the crews extremely secret.

I should appreciate Department’s urgent instructions as to whether form of transfer satisfactory and when crews may be expected.

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