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United States Department of State / Papers relating to the foreign relations of the United States, 1920
(1920)

Cuba,   pp. 1-108 PDF (37.5 MB)


Page 104

FOREIGN RELATIONS, 1920, VOLUME II
tion on and since that date. It is sufficient to say that no substantial
reply has been made by Cuba and no sound argument has been
advanced by it against entering into an arbitration agreement.
Cuba has not even agreed in principle to arbitration notwithstanding
that she is a party to The Hague Conventions on arbitration of
1899 and 1907. It will be obvious to you that the good relations of
the two countries cannot be cemented when one of them apparently
refuses to take prompt steps to arrange for the settlement of an
increasingly irritating dispute.
It is my earnest wish that a protocol along the lines of the above
submitted be agreed to by the two Governments, and you are
instructed to make another effort to obtain if possible the concur-
rence of the Cuban Government in this or a similar protocol. To this
end please seek an interview with the President of Cuba and present
to him forcibly the arguments heretofore outlined to the Legation
and any others which may occur to you in this connection. Add
that the United States is at a loss to understand the apparent in-
difference, if not the actual opposition, of the Cuban Government
to the negotiation of a settlement of this case, and that it must
unmistakably make clear to the Cuban Government that such an
attitude cannot be viewed by the United States other than with con-
cern; for the friendly intercourse of nations, as Cuba must know, is
facilitated by the amicable and prompt settlement of pending dis-
putes. If it is difficult for the Cuban Government to be a party to
an arbitration of this case on account of internal politics, you
may say that such difficulties are fully realized here, but at the
same time you should point out that while it is appreciated that this
consideration may be an obstacle to reaching an agreement to arbi-
trate, it must nevertheless be clearly understood that the settlement
of disputes would never be arrived at if such conditions were to
control, and that, after making every concession to that point of
view, this Government is not in position further to delay settlement
of this case for that reason. If the President refers to a proposal
for "an informal arbitration" you may emphatically state that
this Government is not now open to a proposal for any settlement
of the dispute which binds neither party to abide by the decision
and that the United States can only consider a proposal for a full
and fair consideration of the case on its merits, free from technicali-
ties, by an impartial commission empowered to render an award
which shall be final and binding. During your discussion you are
also instructed to impress upon the President that the United States
cannot continue to overlook a disinclination on the part of Cuba
to negotiate for an arbitration of this case in opposition to its com-
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