Letter to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President of the Senate Reporting on the National Emergency With Respect to Panama

 

April 8, 1988

 

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

 

Pursuant to section 204(b) of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, 50 U.S.C. section 1703, and section 201 of the National Emergencies Act, 50 U.S.C. section 1621, I hereby report that I have exercised my statutory authority to declare a national emergency and take the following measures:

 

(1) Block all property and interests in property of the Government of Panama that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of persons located within the United States, except for transactions that are authorized by, or on behalf of, the recognized representatives of the Government of Panama as certified by the Secretary of State;

 

(2) Prohibit all direct or indirect payments or transfers from the United States or from any U.S. persons or subsidiaries in Panama to the Noriega/Solis regime.

 

The prohibitions are effective immediately and are subject to regulation by the Secretary of the Treasury.

 

I am enclosing a copy of the Executive Order that I have issued making this declaration and exercising these authorities.

 

I have authorized these steps in response to the unusual and extraordinary threat posed by the actions of Manuel Antonio Noriega and Manuel Solis Palma, to challenge the duly constituted authorities of the Government of Panama. In taking these measures we have acted in cooperation with the authorized representatives of the Government and in support of the efforts of the Panamanian people to foster constitutional, democratic government in Panama.

 

The steps taken today follow the previous measures we have taken in coordination with the authorized representatives of the Government of Panama, including the decision to deposit United States Government payments owed Panama in an account established at President Delvalle's request at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and removal of trade preferences under the Generalized System of Preferences and the Caribbean Basin Initiative. These further steps reaffirm our commitment to democratic government in Panama and our belief that Noriega would best serve his country by complying with the instruction of President Delvalle to relinquish his post.

 

The people of the United States and the people of Panama have shared a long and mutually productive relationship, exemplified by the historic Panama Canal Treaties. The United States has been, and remains, committed to fulfilling faithfully its obligations under the Panama Canal Treaties. We are prepared to resume our close working relationships with the Panamanian Defense Forces once civilian government and constitutional democracy are re-established.

 

Sincerely,

 

Ronald Reagan

 

Note: Identical letters were sent to Jim Wright, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and George Bush, President of the Senate.