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Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Diaz Ordaz of Mexico.

August 21, 1970

PRESIDENT Gustavo Diaz Ordaz and president Richard Nixon welcomed the opportunity to renew their personal friendship and the informal conversations begun at their meeting at Amistad Dam in September 1969. The two Presidents reviewed overall relations between the two countries and discussed specifically (1) a comprehensive boundary settlement between the two countries, (2) the problem of salinity in the waters of the lower Colorado River which are delivered to Mexico, and (3) cooperation in combatting illicit traffic in narcotics.

The two Presidents agreed on the principles which were proposed to them by their respective Secretaries for Foreign Relations to be incorporated in a treaty settling all boundary differences between the United States and Mexico and establishing procedures for averting such differences in the future. Their agreement includes the disposition of all territory that had currently been in dispute and particularly the Presidio/Ojinaga dispute pending since 1907. It also provides for the re-establishment of the middle of the Rio Grande (Rio Bravo) as the boundary between the United States and Mexico, wherever it has lost this character, for measures to resolve any boundary questions that might arise as a result of future deviations of the Rio Grande and Colorado River from their present course and for the establishment of fixed maritime boundaries in the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean.

Further details on the agreement are being released jointly today by the Secretary for Foreign Relations and the Secretary of State. The two Presidents emphasized their belief that agreement on these principles is an historic achievement and, that once formalized and ratified according to constitutional procedures, the resultant treaty will be one of the most significant agreements between their two governments in this century.

The two Presidents also discussed the salinity problem that has existed on the lower Colorado River for several years. President Nixon noted that the United States, looking toward a new agreement, has proposed certain new measures that would result in significant improvements in the waters received by Mexico. President Diaz Ordaz said that the Mexican Government regards this proposal as constructive and will study it carefully. The two Presidents instructed their representatives on the International Boundary and Water Commission to examine these proposals in detail and to make appropriate recommendations. They also agreed to reiterate the policy which the two governments have followed during recent years to consult before undertaking works which could cause natural problems similar to that mentioned in this paragraph.

President Diaz Ordaz and President Nixon reaffirmed their determination to suppress the illicit international traffic in marijuana, narcotics and dangerous drugs which has endangered the well-being of both countries. They expressed satisfaction at the vigorous efforts against the illicit use of narcotics on both sides of the border and the high spirit of cooperation which prevails between the two governments. President Nixon congratulated the Mexican Government on the success of its campaign to prevent production and illicit trafficking in narcotics. Both Presidents instructed their Attorneys General, who met simultaneously with them, and other appropriate authorities of their governments, to maintain the closest cooperation in this field.

The two Presidents also discussed the broad subject of trade between the two countries and agreed that they would seek ways to encourage a continued growth in their bilateral trade. President Nixon assured President Diaz Ordaz of his desire to encourage trade between the two countries.

The two Presidents expressed their gratification over additional recent examples of the close cooperation between the two countries, in particular the signing of (1) a Civil Air Agreement, (2) a Weather Agreement, and (3) a Treaty for the Recovery and Return of Stolen Archaeological, Historical and Cultural Properties and for the promotion of cultural exchanges between the two countries.

During their conversations, the two Presidents reiterated their desire to continue efforts to better the understanding between their two peoples and to contribute to the mutual respect and close friendship which have made the relation. ship between their two countries an example to all nations. They agreed that their respective Foreign Secretaries and Ambassadors should continue the discussion of matters of common interest. President Diaz Ordaz expressed to President Nixon his satisfaction with their meeting and the value he placed on their exchange of views. President Nixon congratulated President Diaz Ordaz on the many significant accomplishments of his administration, and expressed his great affection for Mexico and his deep gratitude for the warmth of the reception given him and Mrs. Nixon by the Government and the people of Mexico.

Note: The joint statement was released at Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

On August 21, 1970, the White House released the text of a declaration on United States and Mexican discussions on marihuana, narcotics, and dangerous drugs by Attorney General John N. Mitchell and Attorney General of Mexico Julio Sanchez Vargas.

Richard Nixon, Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Diaz Ordaz of Mexico. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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