335. Memorandum of Conversation1


  • Developments in the Dominican Republic
  • Planning for Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on Cuban Problem


  • U.S.
    • President Kennedy
    • Mr. Chester Bowles, President’s Special Assistant
    • Ambassador Moscoso
    • Assistant Secretary Woodward
    • Deputy Assistant Secretary Goodwin
    • Ambassador Freemen
    • Mr. Henry Dearborn, Counselor of American Embassy, Bogota
  • Colombia
    • President Camargo Lleras
    • Foreign Minister Castilla Caicedo
    • Minister of Finance Mejia
    • Director of National Planning Dept. Gutierrez

President Kennedy called at President Lleras’ office at 5:30 p.m. on December 17. Each President was accompanied by advisers as recorded [Page 692] above. Press photographers were invited in and pictures taken. President Kennedy then suggested that the group sit down for conversations and the Presidents, together with their advisers, held a discussion for over an hour.

Developments in the Dominican Republic

President Kennedy had just been handed a cable from the Consul General in Santo Domingo2 with information on developments there and the Dominican situation was the first item of conversation. He gave President Lleras information from the cable to the effect that President Balaguer had agreed to announce his withdrawal from the presidency before the end of February, actually intending to leave on January 26. Balaguer had agreed in the meantime to set up a Council of State consisting of Jose Maria Cabral Bermudez as First Vice President, Dr. Rafael Bonelly as Second Vice President and with the following as members: Monsenor Perez Sanchez, Sr. Amiama Tio and Sr. Imbert. Presidents Kennedy and Lleras and others present discussed the characteristics of this group and it was generally agreed that the information in the telegram was encouraging.

[Here follows discussion of the preparations for the Eighth Meeting of Foreign Ministers of the Organization of American States; see Document 128.]

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 721.00/12-1761. Confidential. Drafted by Dearborn on December 20 and approved in the White House on January 8, 1962.
  2. See Document 333.