811.34553B/5–2146: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Portugal (Baruch)

top secret
us urgent

511. For Culbertson from Hickerson.

Preamble. The Govt of Portugal and the Govt of the US of America in recognition of their mutual interest in developing international air navigation and commerce, have entered into the following treaty (agreement).

Article I. A. The airport at Santa Maria Island (hereinafter referred to as “the airport”) constructed by the two Govts, in accordance with the agreement of Nov 28, 1944, and more particularly described in the annex thereto, shall remain the property of Portugal and under its sovereignty.

B. Movable property of the US, which is not sold to the Portuguese Govt under the terms of the third numbered pgh of the Accord relative to conditions of delivery of the base at Santa Maria, signed July 23, 1945,31 shall remain the property of the US.

Article II. A. There shall be established a joint US-Portuguese Aviation Board which shall establish policies and plans for the administration and use of the airport. The Board shall determine its procedure.

B. The Board shall be composed of not more than six persons including equal numbers of Portuguese and American representatives, appointed respectively by the Presidents of Portugal and the US.

C. The Board shall recommend to the two Govts a formula for the equitable distribution between the two Govts of the costs of maintenance and operation of the airport and of the revenues received from its commercial operations.

D. The airport shall be administered by an airport manager, who shall be appointed by the US Govt and who shall be guided by the policies laid down by the Aviation Board.

Article III. Civil aircraft of Portugal and the US which have been or may be granted traffic rights in the Azores Islands shall be permitted to use the airport and its auxiliary facilities in the exercise of such rights, under suitable regulations and upon the payment of proper and scheduled charges. Civil aircraft of the US shall not be subjected to the payment of charges for the use of the airport and its auxiliary facilities other or higher than the charges that are exacted [Page 984]and paid for the use of the airport and its facilities by civil aircraft of Portugal engaged in similar international services. Civil aircraft of Portugal and the US may exercise the right of transit over the Azores and the right of non-traffic stop at the airport.

Article IV. A. In order to support its occupation forces in Germany and Japan, the US Govt shall have the unrestricted use of the airport for its military and other aircraft engaged in such operations and shall have the right to provide and maintain at the airport sufficient personnel for the efficient handling of this traffic.

B. The US Govt shall have the right to provide and maintain at the airport aircraft and personnel to provide for air search and sea rescue operations and for weather observations.

C. The US Govt shall have the right to use the port and harbor facilities and anchorages necessary to supply and maintain the operations provided for in pghs A and B.

D. The US Govt shall have the right of passage on Santa Maria Island for its personnel, vehicles and equipment necessary for the exercise of the rights accorded.

Article V. The Portuguese Govt shall have the right to make the airport available to the Security Council in accordance with any agreement or agreements which the Portuguese Govt may wish to make under Art 43 of the United Nations Charter.

Article VI. The defense of the island of Santa Maria and the airport shall remain within the responsibility of the Portuguese Govt. The US shall have the right to assist in the defense of the airport when, in the judgment of the US, such a course is necessary.

Article VII. A. All materials, fuels, equipment, supplies or other cargo imported to, or exported from, Santa Maria, by air or by sea, for the use of the US or for the use of local US personnel employed by the US Govt in the operation of the airport, shall be exempted from any duties, port taxes, emoluments, or other type of tax or fee normally assessed by the Portuguese Govt.

B. No employee of the US resident on Portuguese territory by reason of employment pursuant to this treaty (agreement) shall be liable to pay income tax on income derived from the Govt of the US, unless such person is a national of Portugal.

Article VIII. (Jurisdiction article to be worked out later.)

Article IX. A. The US Govt shall have the same rights of use at Lagens airport on Terceira Island as are accorded to the Govt of the UK.

B. The US Govt shall have the right at its discretion to assume the rights and responsibilities accorded the Brit Govt if at any time during the life of the agreement between the British and Portuguese Govts the British Govt desires to withdraw from Lagens airport.

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Article X. A. All aircraft having landing rights at Lagens airport on Terceira Island, Azores, shall have emergency landing rights on Santa Maria airport. Likewise, all aircraft having landing rights at Santa Maria shall, in case of emergency be permitted to exercise such rights at Lagens.

B. The US Govt shall have the right, for official purposes, to land its transport and administrative aircraft at any airdromes in the Azores and at Lisbon, Portugal.

Article XI. The present treaty (agreement) shall be ratified by the two Govts in accordance with the provisions of their respective laws, and the ratifications shall be exchanged at Lisbon. The treaty (agreement) shall come into force between the two Govts, upon the exchange of their respective instruments of ratification, and shall remain in force for ten years or for the duration of the US’ occupation of Germany and/or Japan, whichever is the longer, unless the two Govts agree otherwise.

[Hickerson]
Byrnes
  1. The four supplementary accords of July 23, 1945, not printed, were agreements implementing subdivisions a), b), c), and d) of article IV of the Agreement of November 28, 1944.