449. Telegram From the Embassy in Cuba to the Department of State 1

1876. Deptel 1097.2 Saw Roa at 1450 and went over points one to three of reftel with him taking care to avoid using any offensive language.

Roa was cordial. He said he believed Dorticos’ statement3 had opened way for resumption of normal diplomatic relations, which GOC desired. He agreed entirely with points 3a and 3c. He requested that my representation be put in form of a note verbale which he could take to President and Prime Minister. He said GOC would be ready to resume negotiations with U.S. immediately on Ambassador Bonsal’s return and expressed optimism that all problems could be satisfactorily resolved if both countries were reasonable.

I reminded him that decision re Ambassador’s return hinged on our receiving the assurances of GOC, given through him, that it had no charges against Embassy for illegal or improper activities and none against Ambassador, and that any furture doubts of such nature would be taken up and ventilated through normal diplomatic channels before being made the subject of public statements. Roa said this was a matter which would have to be decided by the Government, which was one of his reasons for requesting note verbale. He promised GOC would reply promptly to such note.

Roa stated also that we would shortly receive note replying to our No. 203 of January 114 re seizures of American property by INRA.

Roa’s reaction to our approach seemed to me satisfactory and his request that representation be put in writing not unreasonable. I recommend we provide such a note, tactfully drafted, covering points one to three. Roa did not raise question of interview between Castro and Bonsal and I did not bring it up.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 611. 37/2–460. Confidential; Limit Distribution; Niact. The time of transmission and receipt are not given on the source text.
  2. Supra .
  3. See Document 440.
  4. See Document 422.