103.9169/2–1245: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Cuba (Braden)

94. Telegram 86 of February 9 from FEA requesting maintenance of position that USCC is immune from suit and therefore not liable to claims outlined in your telegram 71 of February 3 is valid from a strictly legalistic standpoint, but in no way alters the position outlined in the Department’s cable 896 of November 20, 194439 which stated that:

“Without waiving general immunity rights, USCC should voluntarily comply with provisions local labor laws so far as such provisions are practicable and will not seriously embarrass the agency’s operations.

“While indicating to Cuban Government temporary character of its operations, agency should abide by views Cuban Government as to advisability formal contract wtih union” et cetera.

It is the view of the Department that agencies of this Government should not ordinarily exercise their right to immunity with respect to these matters, although doubt should not be cast upon legal right to such immunity of an agency or instrumentality of the U.S. Government. FEA is aware of the Department’s position and that you are being instructed accordingly.

Receipt of full details would aid the Department in reaching a decision as to whether or not immunity should be waived in this case.

  1. Not printed.