He also agreed to respect the freedom of the maroons who had fled from their masters to join the Cubans during the ten years war, and this led to Spains very soon granting gradual emancipation to the remainder of the slaves who had stood by their owners.
The prime minister declared that the Cubans must submit first, and then the mother country would be generous.
He showed the same merciless spirit in dealing with the Cubans; and he certainly cleared two-thirds of the island of Creole bands, and stamped out disaffection.
If things had not already gone too far in Cuba, and if public opinion in the United States had not exercised irresistible pressure on both Congress and president, the Moret home-rule project would probably have sufficed to give the Cubans a fair amount of self-government.
The American commission, presided over by secretary Day in Paris, absolutely refused to admit the Spanish contention that the United States or the new administration in Cuba and the Philippines should be saddled with several hundred million dollars of debts, contracted by the colonial treasuries, and guaranteed by Spain, almost entirely to maintain Spanish rule against the will of the Cubans and Filipinos.