722.2315/708

The Ambassador in Peru (Dearing) to the Secretary of State

No. 2331

Sir: I have the honor to report to the Department that during the Leguía régime a form of treaty had been worked out between the Ecuadorian Minister here and the Peruvian Government, but as he considered that it was not satisfactory for Peru, the then Minister of Foreign Affairs, Señor Oliveira, rejected the treaty. The Department doubtless recalls this Embassy’s various reports upon the long continued negotiations carried on by Señor Aguirre Aparicio, the Ecuadorian Minister here, with this Government, the last of which was my No. 2242 of October 17, 1932. I now have the honor to inform the Department that word comes through a trusted source from Señor Oliveira that the Ecuadorian Government has represented, through its Minister to Lima, that unless Peru is prepared to sign this treaty, formerly rejected by Sr. Oliveira, Ecuador will cast in her lot with Colombia. Señor Oliveira has assured the Embassy’s informant that the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Doctor Zavala, in his efforts to protect the Government from the consequences of its indefensible stand in the Leticia question, is prepared to sign the treaty with Ecuador and that the ceremony will take place very shortly, very likely with the same publicity that has been cast about the signing of various agreements with Chile. Señor Oliveira feels that very extensive tracts of territory, which should be retained by Peru, will be turned over by the treaty to Ecuador and that the present Government, in signing the treaty, will be practicing precisely [Page 361]the sort of mutilation against which El Comercio and the Civilistas and Sanchezcerristas are so voluble in protest at the present time.

Another phase of the significance of this matter is the fact that word of the proposed action of the Foreign Minister has got about and many Peruvians, especially in the Army, are incensed by it and are quite prepared to make the signing of the treaty with Ecuador the basis for subversive action against the Government along lines which I shall set out in my despatch No. 2333 of November 10.5

Respectfully yours,

Fred Morris Dearing
  1. Not printed.