710.1012 Anti-War/11

The Argentine Ambassador (Espil) to the Secretary of State

D. E. No. 66

Mr. Secretary of State: I have the honor to address Your Excellency, enclosing herewith the draft of an anti-war treaty of non-aggression and conciliation which the Argentine Government has formulated in order to propose it to the countries which have subscribed to the agreement of August 3, 1932.5

Its principal purpose is to give a character of permanency to and establish in organic form the agreement of wills which that noble international act signified which has come to establish the bonds which unite the countries of America.

It is also proposed to strengthen the Kellogg-Briand Pact, adapting it to the Covenant of the League of Nations6 and to the various resolutions of the Pan American Conferences, and thus facilitate its universal application.

My Government believes that this Draft Anti-war Treaty which aids in enlarging the radius of the application of the initiative of the United States, will merit its approval and adhesion.

I take this opportunity [etc.]

Felipe Espil

Draft of a South American Anti-War Treaty (Non-Aggression and Conciliation)

In an endeavor to contribute to the consolidation of peace, and in order to express their adherence to the efforts that all civilized nations have made to further the spirit of universal harmony;

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To the end of condemning wars of aggression and territorial acquisitions secured by means of armed conquest and of making them impossible, of sanctioning their invalidity through the positive provisions of this Treaty, and in order to replace them with pacific solutions based upon lofty concepts of justice and equity;

Being convinced that one of the most effective means of insuring the moral and material benefits the world derives from peace, is through the organization of a permanent system of conciliation of international disputes, to be applied upon a violation of the hereinafter mentioned principles;

Have decided to record, in conventional form, these aims of nonaggression and concord, through the conclusion of the present Treaty, to which end they have appointed as their Plenipotentiaries:

His Excellency the President of the Argentine Republic, . . . . . . .

Who, after having communicated their respective full powers, which were found in good and due form, have agreed on the following provisions:

Article I

The High Contracting Parties solemnly declare that they condemn wars of aggression in their mutual relations, and that the settlement of disputes and controversies shall be effected only through the pacific means established by International Law.

Article II

They declare that territorial questions must not be settled by resort to violence and that they shall recognize no territorial arrangement not obtained through pacific means, nor the validity of an occupation or acquisition of territory brought about by armed force.

Article III

In case any of the Parties to the dispute fails to comply with the obligations set forth in the foregoing articles, the Contracting States undertake to make every effort in their power for the maintenance of peace. To that end, and in their character of neutrals, they shall adopt a common and solidary attitude; they shall exercise the political, juridical or economic means authorized by International Law; they shall bring the influence of public opinion to bear; but in no case shall they resort to intervention either diplomatic or armed. The attitude they may have to take under other collective treaties of which said States are signatories, is excluded from the foregoing provisions.

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Article IV

The High Contracting Parties, with respect to all controversies which have not been settled through diplomatic channels within a reasonable period, obligate themselves to submit to the conciliatory procedure created by this Treaty, the disputes specifically mentioned, and any others that may arise in their reciprocal relations, without any further limitations than those recited in the following Article.

Article V

The High Contracting Parties and the States which may hereafter accede to this Treaty, may not formulate at the moment of signing, ratifying or adhering thereto, limitations to the procedure of Conciliation other than those indicated below:

Controversies for the settlement of which pacifist treaties, conventions, covenants, or agreements, of any nature, have been concluded. These shall in no case be deemed superseded by this Treaty; to the contrary, they shall be considered as supplemented thereby insofar as they are directed to insure peace. Questions or issues settled by previous treaties are also included in the exception.
Disputes that the Parties prefer to settle by direct negotiation or through submission to an arbitral or judicial procedure by mutual consent.
Issues that International Law leaves to the exclusive domestic jurisdiction of each State, under its constitutional system. On this ground the Parties may object to their being submitted to the procedure of conciliation before the national or local jurisdiction has rendered a final decision. Cases of manifest denial of justice or delay in the judicial proceedings are excepted, and should they arise, the procedure of conciliation shall be started not later than within the year.
Questions affecting constitutional provisions of the Parties to the controversy. In case of doubt, each Party shall request its respective Tribunal or Supreme Court, whenever vested with authority therefor, to render a reasoned opinion on the matter.

At any time, and in the manner provided for in Article XV, any High Contracting Party may communicate the instrument stating that it has partially or totally dropped the limitations set thereby to the procedure of conciliation.

The Contracting Parties shall deem themselves bound to each other in connection with the limitations made by any of them, only to the extent of the exceptions recorded in this Treaty.

Article VI

Should there be no Permanent Commission of Conciliation, or any other international body charged with such a mission under previous Treaties in force, the High Contracting Parties undertake [Page 264] to submit their controversies to examination and inquiry by a Commission of Conciliation to be organized in the manner hereinafter set forth, except in case of an agreement to the contrary entered into by the Parties in each instance:

The Commission of Conciliation shall consist of five members. Each Party to the controversy shall appoint one member, who may be chosen from among its own nationals. The three remaining members shall be appointed by agreement of the Parties from among nationals of third nations. The latter must be of different nationalities, and shall not have their habitual residence in the territory of the Parties concerned, nor be in the service of either one of them. The Parties shall select the President of the Commission of Conciliation from among these three members.

Should the Parties be unable to agree, they may request a third nation or any other existing international body to make those designations. Should the nominees so designated be objected to by the Parties, or by any of them, each Party shall submit a list containing as many names as vacancies are to be filled, and the names of those to sit on the Commission of Conciliation shall be determined by lot.

Article VII

Those Tribunals or Supreme Courts of Justice vested by the domestic law of each State with authority to interpret, as a Court of sole or final recourse and in matters within their respective jurisdiction, the Constitution, the treaties or the general principles of the Law of Nations, may be preferred for designation by the High Contracting Parties to discharge the duties entrusted to the Commission of Conciliation established in this Treaty. In this event, the Tribunal or Court may be constituted by the whole bench or may appoint some of its members to act independently or in Mixed Commissions organized with justices of other Courts or Tribunals, as may be agreed by the Parties to the controversy.

Article VIII

The Commission of Conciliation shall establish its own Rules of Procedure. These shall provide, in all cases, for hearing both sides.

The Parties to the controversy may furnish, and the Commission may request from them, all the antecedents and data necessary. The Parties may be represented by Agents, with the assistance of Counsel or experts, and may also submit every kind of evidence.

Article IX

The proceedings and discussions of the Commission of Conciliation shall not be made public unless there is a decision to that effect, [Page 265] assented to by the Parties. In the absence of any provision to the contrary, the Commission shall adopt its decisions by a majority vote; but it may not pass upon the substance of the issue unless all its members are in attendance.

Article X

It is the duty of the Commission to procure a conciliatory settlement of the disputes submitted to it. After impartial consideration of the questions involved in the dispute, it shall set forth in a report the outcome of its work and shall submit to the Parties proposals for a settlement on the basis of a just and equitable solution. The report of the Commission shall, in no case, be in the nature of a decision or arbitral award, either in regard to the exposition or interpretation of facts or in connection with juridical considerations or findings.

Article XI

The Commission of Conciliation shall submit its report within a year to be reckoned from the day of its first sitting, unless the Parties decide, by common accord, to shorten or extend that term.

Once started, the procedure of conciliation may only be interrupted by a direct settlement between the Parties, or by their later decision to submit, by common accord, the dispute to arbitration or to an international court.

Article XII

On communicating its report to the Parties, the Commission of Conciliation shall fix a period of time, which shall not exceed six months, within which the Parties shall pass upon the bases of settlement it has proposed. Once this period of time has expired the Commission shall set forth in a final act the decision of the Parties.

Should the period of time lapse without the Parties having accepted the settlement, nor adopted by common accord another friendly solution, the Parties to the controversy shall regain their freedom of action to proceed as they may see fit within the limitations set forth in Articles I and II of this Treaty.

Article XIII

From the outset of the procedure of conciliation until the expiration of the term set by the Commission for the Parties to make a decision, they shall abstain from any measure which may prejudice the carrying out of the settlement to be proposed by the Commission and, in general, from every act capable of aggravating or prolonging the controversy.

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Article XIV

During the procedure of conciliation the members of the Commission shall receive honoraria in the amount to be agreed upon by the Parties to the controversy. Each Party shall bear its own expenses and a moiety of the joint expenses or honoraria.

Article XV

This Treaty shall be ratified by the High Contracting Parties, as soon as possible, in conformity with their respective constitutional procedures.

The original Treaty and the instruments of ratification shall be deposited in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Argentine Republic which shall give notice of the ratifications to the other Signatory States. The Treaty shall enter into effect for the High Contracting Parties in the order in which they deposit their ratifications.

Article XVI

Any State not a signatory of this Treaty may adhere to it by sending the appropriate instrument to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Argentine Republic, to the end that it may notify the other Contracting States.

Article XVII

This Treaty is concluded for an indefinite period, but it may be denounced by means of one year’s previous notice at the expiration of which it shall cease to be in force as regards the Party denouncing the same, but shall remain in a force as regards the other signatories. Notice of the denunciation shall be addressed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Argentine Republic which will transmit it to the other High Contracting Parties.

In witness whereof, the above mentioned Plenipotentiaries have signed this Treaty. . . . . . .

  1. Ante, p. 159.
  2. Treaties, Conventions, etc., 1910–1923, vol. iii, p. 3336.
  3. The enclosure is a pamphlet entitled Proyecto de Tratado Antibelico Sudamericano (No-Agresion y Conciliacion), published by República Argentina, Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores y Culto (Buenos Aires, 1932). It consists of two parts, the Proyecto, and the Exposicion de Motivos. Only a translation of the Proyecto is printed here.

    In despatch No. 1856, November 9, the Ambassador in Argentina reported that the Argentine Minister for Foreign Affairs indicated that the treaty might be called a Pan American treaty just as well as South American, this designation having been used merely to indicate its origin. (724.3415/2538)