724.34119/1262: Telegram

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

58. From Braden. My 57, March 15, 7 p.m. President of the Argentine Republic in interview with Zubizarreta with map in hand demanded that a compromise frontier be agreed on as soon as possible and requested him to cancel his trip.

Rivarola16 has been invited but probably will not accept to be Paraguayan Minister for Foreign Affairs, leaves for Asunción Saturday. He admitted to his close friend Alvarado yesterday that Paraguay in the face of united mediatory pressure would have to cede but lamented Zubizarreta chairmanship of delegation as major obstacle since other two delegates lack authority and force.

Committee today agreed Alvarado should dine privately with Rivarola tonight and point out dangers of continued intransigence, also if possible arranging for Rivarola to telephone Asunción authorities to instruct Paraguayan delegation to adopt more conciliatory attitude. Contingent upon results tonight Alvarado may follow up on this conversation by seeing Rivarola and Zubizarreta jointly tomorrow. Also Justo will ask Rivarola tomorrow afternoon to give entire support to Conference.

Committee today with all delegates except Uruguayan present felt that in addition to formula described last paragraph my 57, Conference should present to Paraguayan delegation two more alternatives: (a) Guachalla geographical point on Parapiti, Ravelo, Paraguay River immediately south of Bahia Negra, that town being given to Bolivia; (b) a formula delimiting a zone to be submitted to arbitration which I shall telegraph as soon as agreed upon by mediators. We have things rolling now and must press on, if necessary by threatening to end direct negotiations but as pointed out by the Brazilian delegate this morning not actually do so until Cantilo assumes office. I have held that as final step indirect negotiations trips to ex-belligerent nations shall be started before end of month. The Department will notice modification of Conference attitude from that reported penultimate paragraph my 57.

Alvarado is telegraphing urgently Ambassador today that both his and Manernirios’ [Manini Rios’]17 presence in Conference imperative at this critical time in negotiations.

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Next committee meeting called for Saturday morning when alternative formulae will be discussed and perhaps presented to Paraguayan delegation. [Braden.]

  1. Vicente Rivarola, Paraguayan delegate.
  2. Pedro Manini Rios, Uruguayan delegate.