The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Ecuador ( Scotten )

No. 1248

The Secretary of State encloses for the study and comments of the Ambassador the translation of the Spanish draft of a treaty41 for establishing a military base in the Galápagos Islands, presented to the Department by Señor Galo Plaza, the Ecuadoran Ambassador in Washington.

This draft is now being examined in the Department and the early comments of the Embassy would be appreciated. It is not necessary for the Embassy to discuss the matter with the Ecuadoran authorities, as no decision has as yet been taken in regard to this draft.

Señor Galo Plaza takes into consideration the strenuous objections made in Ecuador to the Department’s draft which was forwarded to Quito in instruction no. 935 of November 14, 1944.40 In his opinion it is important that: Salinas should not be formally included in the treaty; the terms “lease” and “rent” should be avoided, since they are regarded as an affront to Ecuadoran dignity; Ecuadoran sovereignty needs further emphasis; 99 years is too long a term for the agreement.

Article X of the enclosed draft refers to exchanges of notes which will take place in connection with the implementation of the treaty. The Department contemplates that the text of its note to the Ecuadoran Government will be taken more or less directly from the corresponding parts of the draft forwarded to the Embassy in Quito under cover of instruction no. 935 of November 14, 1944.