The Chargé in Peru ( Smith ) to the Secretary of State

No. 413

Sir: Referring to your despatch No. 193, of September 17, 1919, enclosing extract of despatch from the American Minister at Bogotá, concerning boundary question between Peru and Colombia, I have the honor to report as follows:

In conversation with the Minister for Foreign Affairs yesterday, I inquired as to the progress being made in the settlement of the boundary dispute between Colombia and Peru. He informed me that, in view of the fact that Colombia had made a suggestion that the district in dispute should be made a neutral zone, the question was in abeyance, as the Peruvian Government could not accede to this arrangement. He said that the Peruvian Government was anxious and willing to arbitrate the boundary question along definite lines, but that it was not willing to agree that Colombia should designate certain lines and Peru certain lines, and arbitrate only the disputed zone. This, as he pointed out, would be a too indefinite arrangement and would lead to further trouble.

The Peruvian Minister at Bogotá, Señor Elguera, was obliged to leave Colombia on account of ill health, and will be replaced by a newly appointed Minister within the coming month.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs hopes that with the appointment of a new Peruvian Minister the question of the boundary settlement will progress rapidly.

I am [etc.]

Wm. Walker Smith