Mr. Buchanan to Mr. Hay.

No 710.]

Sir: It gives me pleasure to inclose herewith a copy and translation of the general treaty of arbitration which has recently been signed here between this Government and that of Uruguay.

I am sure it will be read with great interest by you, as it undoubtedly reflects in a highly complimentary and commendable manner not only the good will and feeling of confidence which exists between the two neighboring Republics, which have thus been the first among their sister Republics to the south of our own to adopt by treaty the principle of arbitration in a wide and rational sense, but, as well, great credit upon the two Governments.

Since the signing of this treaty I have been spoken to several times by public men here with regard to their wish that they might see the same kind of a treaty signed with our Government. Yesterday his excellency President Roca said to me that he heartily hoped such a treaty might be concluded between his Government and our own; that such an act would have a far greater moral weight and be of wider good throughout South America than we possibly imagined; that he hoped that I would not fail while at Washington on leave to express to you and the President his view in that regard and the pleasure it would give him to see such a treaty signed between our Government and that of his country.

I replied that I would not only most gladly do as he wished, but that I felt certain the sentiments he had expressed would find a cordial welcome on the part of the President. In so stating, I feel sure I was [Page 9] properly interpreting what would have been your instructions had you known of the subject.

I shall, in compliance with President Roca’s wish, do myself the honor when in Washington in August to verbally express to you the reasons he gave me for wishing to make such a treaty with us and his hope that we might decide to do so.

I have, etc.,

William I. Buchanan.
[Inclosure.—Translation from La Nacion, June 11, 1899.]

General treaty of arbitration, signed at Buenos Ayres June 8, 1899, between the Argentine and Uruguayan Governments.

The Governments of the Argentine Republic and of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, animated by a common desire to solve by friendly means whatever question that may arise between them, have agreed to celebrate a general treaty of arbitration, for which purpose they name as their plenipotentiaries, to wit:

His excellency the President of the Argentine Republic; his minister, secretary of the department of foreign relations and worship, Dr. Amancio Alcorta; and his excellency the President of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay; his envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary in the Argentine Republic, Dr. Gonzalo Ramirez, who, having communicated to each other their full powers, found to be in due and good form, have agreed on the following articles:

Article 1. The high contracting parties obligate themselves to submit to an Arbitral decision all controversies of whatever kind which for any cause may arise between them, when they do not affect the principles of the constitution of one or other country, and when they can not be solved by means of direct negotiations.

Art. 2. Questions which have been the objects of definite arrangements between the parties can not be renewed by virtue of this treaty. In such cases arbitration will be exclusively limited to the questions which may arise upon the validity, interpretation, and compliance with said arrangements.

Art. 3. In each case arising a tribunal of arbitration will be created, which shall resolve the existing controversy. If no agreement can be reached to the constitution of the tribunal, it shall be composed of three judges. Each State shall name an arbitrator, and these shall designate the third. If they cannot agree upon this designation, it shall be made by the head of a third State, who will be indicated by the arbitrators named by the parties. If no agreement can be reached concerning this last nomination, the President of the French Republic shall be asked to make the designation. The arbitrator thus designated shall by right be present of the tribunal.

No person can be named third arbitrator who in such character shall have previously rendered a decision in an arbitral case under the terms of this treaty.

Art. 4. None of the arbitrators can be a citizen of the contracting States nor domiciled in their territory. Neither can they have an interest in the questions which may be the object of arbitration.

Art. 5. In the case of the nonacceptance or resignation of one or more of the arbitrators, or an insuperable impediment befalling one of them, a substitute shall be provided according to the same proceedings observed for the nomination of the arbitrator.

Art. 6. The points agreed upon shall be set forth by the contracting States, which can also fix the scope of the powers of the arbitrators and any other facts relating to the proceedings.

Art. 7. In default of special stipulations between the parties, it appertains to the tribunal to designate the time and place of its sittings outside the territory of the contracting States, to elect the language that shall be employed, to determine the methods of proofs, the formalities that shall be followed by the two parties, the procedure to be observed, and in general to take all measures that may be necessary to enable it to perform its functions, and to resolve all the difficulties which may arise in the course of debate. The contracting parties agree to place at the disposition of the arbitrators all means of information of which they are possessed.

Art. 8. Each one of the parties can appoint one or more representatives before the arbitral tribunal.

Art. 9. The tribunal is competent to pronounce upon the regularity of its own constitution, validity of the agreement, and of its interpretation. It is equally competent [Page 10] to settle the controversies that may arise between the contracting parties on the subject whether certain questions may have or have not been points submitted to arbitral jurisdiction under written agreement.

Art. 10. The tribunal shall decide in accord with the principles of international law, unless the agreement imposes the application of special rules or authorizes the arbitrators to decide as friendly intermediators.

Art. 11. The tribunal can not meet without the attendance of the three arbitrators.

In the event that the minority, after being duly cited, declines to take part in the deliberations or other acts of the case, the tribunal will be formed by the majority of the arbitrators only, the voluntary or unjustifiable nonattendance of the minority being duly noted.

The award reached by the majority of the arbitrators will be final, but if the third arbitrator does not accept the view of either of the arbitrators named by the two parties his conclusion will be final.

Art. 12. The award shall definitely decide each point in controversy, giving the reasons therefor.

It shall be written in duplicate and signed by all the arbitrators. If one of them should refuse to sign it the others shall make mention of this fact in a special act, and the award shall be effective when signed by the majority of the arbitrators. The dissenting arbitrator shall at the time of the signing of the award make known his disagreement therewith, but without expressing his reasons therefor.

Art. 13. The notification of the award shall be made to each one of the contracting parties by its representative before the tribunal.

Art. 14. The award legally rendered shall settle within the limits of its effect the controversy between the parties.

Art. 15. The tribunal shall set forth the period within which it shall be made effective, being competent to decide the questions that may arise in consequence of the execution of the award.

Art 16. The award can not be appealed, and its execution is confided to the honor of the nations who are signatories to this pact.

Nevertheless, recourse of revision before the same tribunal which pronounced the award may be had, provided there is shown before the expiration of the time named for the execution of the award that:

It has been rendered by virtue of a forced or falsified document.
That it has been in whole or in part the consequence of an error of fact resulting from the proceedings or documents in the case.

Art. 17. Each of the contracting parties shall pay its own expenses and half of the general expenses of the arbitral tribunal.

Art. 18. The present treaty shall remain in force for ten years from the date of the exchange of ratifications. If it should not be denounced six months prior to its term of expiration, it shall be regarded as renewed for another period of ten years, and so successively.

The present treaty shall be ratified and its ratifications exchanged in Buenos Ayres within six months from the date thereof.

  • Amancio Alcorta.
  • Gonzalo Ramirez.