834.01/11: Telegram

The Ambassador in Argentina (Weddell) to the Secretary of State

47. Department’s 23, February 27, 7 p.m. Mr. Braden has already seen the Foreign Minister and reports as follows:

Saavedra Lamas has not arrived at definite conclusion as yet on developments in Paraguay but is inclined to believe new Government will remain in power for at least several months. At conference [Page 873] executive committee meetings on February 26th and 28th he suggested the following general course of action:
Six neutral nations should proceed carefully and slowly in respect to recognition and in any event await arrival here next Monday of Lieutenant Colonel Ricalde, one of the principal revolutionary leaders whom new Government has appointed as member of Special Repatriation Commission;
Before granting recognition six neutral nations should receive a definite written declaration of new Government’s intention to respect June 12th and January 21st protocols thus confirming public statements made by Dr. Stefanich.
It should be borne in mind that Saavedra Lamas’ viewpoint is probably influenced by several considerations quite apart from the Chaco question and purely concerning Argentine-Paraguayan relations.
While agreeing that caution is essential I have urged that we must consider the following:
New regime according to available information appears likely to maintain itself in power at least for several months;
Dr. Stefanich’s statements indicated full intention to comply with all foreign obligations including Buenos Aires protocols;
repatriation should begin by March 9 in accordance with article 4 of January 21st protocol;
in order to carry forward repatriation, recognition of new regime by six neutrals probably will be essential;
therefore were the six neutrals to delay recognition excepting for good and sufficient cause they might endanger Buenos Aires protocols, repatriation of prisoners and subject themselves to justifiable criticism.
No definite decision has so far been reached by the Committee as to recommending recognition to their respective governments. I expect frequent Committee meetings during next week.