Memorandum from Army Judge Advocate General on the subject of Transfer of U.S. property in Panama

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The memo presents the legal opinion of the Army Judge Advocate General for international affairs on whether the Department of Defense can transfer property in Panama to other U.S. Government Agencies. After reviewing sections of the Panama Canal Treaty of 1977 and the Panama Canal Act of 1979, he concludes that the transfer of property is authorized under both the Treaty and the Act. However, the procedures and approval for transfers will depend on the type of property being transferred, its intended use and the identity of the transferee. For example the transfer of property to a non-US entity would require consent of the Government of Panama. The Smithsonian is considered a US entity under the Treaty, thus it would be permissible for the Department of Defense to transfer some of its extensive landholdings in Panama to the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.


  • Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI)
  • Government of Panama
  • Panama Canal Treaty of 1977
  • Panama Canal Act of 1979
  • United States Dept. of Defense


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions
  • Memorandum

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 93-062, Assistant Secretary for Research, c. 1985-1991, Records, Box 12, Folder: STRI 1991 (Documents)

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Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,




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Physical description

Number of pages: 5; Page Numbers: 1-5

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