811.24537/11–745: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Cuba ( Norweb )

639. Ambassador Belt called at the Department’s request to discuss informally an arrangement between the two Governments for reciprocal use of strategic airports, specifically Batista and San Julian. Belt stated present is opportune time for discussions.

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Accordingly a draft proposal22 will be given to Belt. A copy is going forward to you by air.

You are requested to seek audience with Grau and, recalling his conversations with Ambassador Braden, to explain the proposal and seek his support therefor.

We are not prepared to agree with Cuban Note of September 24 that 1942 airport Agreements terminate on March 2, 1946. Nevertheless it is hoped that agreement on Draft Proposal can be reached prior to that date.

Byrnes
  1. Draft proposal dated November 5, 1945, entitled “Agreement for reciprocal use of strategic airports”, not printed; this proposal called for the creation of a “Technical Commission for the Conservation of Airports,” composed of equal numbers of representatives of the Cuban Air Force and of the armed forces of to the one proposed here was signed with Brazil at Rio de Janeiro, June 14, 1944; for text, see Foreign Relations, 1944, vol. vii, p. 561.