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Canal Treaty / Carter-Torrijos Meeting / Positions Clarified #46163

ABC Evening News for Friday, Oct 14, 1977
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(DC) Confusion and opposition to Panama Canal treaty noted. President Carter invited Panama's General Torrijos to visit again; after talks this morning, both are apparently satisfied.
REPORTER: Ted Koppel

(DC) Details of Carter-Torrijos meeting and items in treaty discussed noted. Later, Carter tells group of editors that differences in interpretation have been resolved. Torrijos, through English-speaking ambassador, confirms that while United States can't intervene in Panama's affairs, it can defend Canal against outside attack. [TRANSLATOR - notes Torrijos says if major power attacks or threatens Canal, United States has right to protect it.] [Ambassador Sol LINOWITZ - reads from official statement of understanding, re: interpretation of treaty points.]
REPORTER: Sam Donaldson

(DC) Question now is if today's talks persuade Senators enough for passage. Admin. sends 2 of most persuasive treaty advocates to Senate Foreign Relations Committee today.
REPORTER: Ted Koppel

(DC) Testifying to committee are Dean Rusk and Henry Kissinger, who show that last 4 presidents, Johnson, Nixon, Ford and Carter, have all favored such treaty. Rusk and Kissinger rebut stands of treaty opponents. [RUSK - thinks United States would be in better position to defend Canal under new treaty then 1903 treaty.] [KISSINGER - understands and sympathizes with those who want to see United States stop retreating around world, but says simply maintaining status quo isn't strong policy.] REPORTER: Charles Gibson

Donaldson, Sam;
Koppel, Ted

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