811.34553B/6–2846: Telegram

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

us urgent

561. Embtel 549, June 22. For Culbertson. British Embassy has received following memo from Portuguese Foreign Office in reply to its aide-mémoire of June 22:

“The Portuguese authorities will receive with great pleasure the mission of English technical experts which the Air Ministry wishes to send to Portugal for the study of matters concerning the execution of the agreement of May 30.

It is thought however that this mission’s stay of only one day at Lagens will not be sufficient for the necessary exchange of views on the spot and for this reason the Ministry regards it as desirable that the possibility of a more prolonged initial stay there should be considered. As the questions to be studied will be of a technical and practical character it is of the greatest advantage that at least in their first stages they should be able to be considered locally as fully as possible.

The Portuguese authorities not having previously been aware of the dates suggested in the British aide-mémoire, the contents of which are being studied by the competent departments, do not find themselves able to begin work before July 13 and for this reason request the good offices of His Majesty’s Embassy in arranging that this date may be fixed for the arrival of the mission at Lagens.

The American authorities have not yet taken any corresponding steps concerning matters relating to Santa Maria. The Minister for Foreign Affairs takes this opportunity however to suggest that the nature of the agreements to be reached and also the different uses for which the Portuguese Govt have destined the two airfields do not require joint conversations for the purposes in view.

The Portuguese Govt will not fail however to supply the Embassy of the United States of America in due course with the necessary material for the objects mentioned in Clause 3 of the British aide-mémoire.

On these conditions there is no objection to the initiation of the proposed conversations with the British mission on the date indicated above.

In accordance with the request made in the aide-mémoire the members of the English mission may wear uniforms during their stay in Portugal.”