711F.1914/11–246: Telegram

The Ambassador in Panama ( Hines ) to the Secretary of State

us urgent

690. ReDeptel 563, November 2, 1946, 3 a.m. Proposed joint statement transmitted was taken up Foreign Minister this date. Joint statement in present form is not satisfactory to the Panamanian Govt for they do not feel it would be helpful in existing political conditions and feeling on part of the people to issue same. Foreign Minister urgently requests that I ask Dept to give further consideration to their proposed statement transmitted our telegram 688, October 31.

With reference to the limitation in proposed new statement they suggest adding as a last paragraph the following: “Both Govts accept that, upon request of only one of them, the period of 90 days which is established here for the joint control of the bases and for the celebration of a new agreement will be extended within another similar period of 90 days and both Governments accept also that this second period may be extended once again by mutual consent in the event that it prove insufficient.”

For Dept’s information, I desire to reiterate again that the proposed joint statement is felt necessary by the present administration to satisfy the people who are definitely of the opinion that existing 1942 agreement has expired. Every part mentioned in Dept’s instructions to me has been made known to the Panamanian Govt and discussed over and over again. It is my definite judgment that we will have to give some help to the present administration to enable them to overcome existing political difficulties. I believe this can be done without jeopardizing position under 1942 agreement. I therefore suggest that the main points made in Panamanian proposition last submitted be [Page 1130] carefully reviewed with a view of adopting as nearly as practicable the language they feel is essential to satisfy their people. Present administration is cordial and friendly and anxious to get on with the negotiation of new agreement.