715.1715/1510: Telegram

The Chargé in Honduras ( Cousins ) to the Secretary of State

65. Referring to Department’s telegram No. 41 dated September 25, 7 p.m., regarding the Honduran Nicaraguan boundary incident. I saw the Foreign Minister this morning and explained to him the Department’s attitude in the matter. He informed me that Nicaragua claimed in its original protest that Honduran soldiers had arrested Nicaraguan citizens on Nicaraguan territory but that this was not the case as the territory concerned was without doubt (netamente) Honduran and that the Nicaraguans had moved the boundary markers some 400 meters from the actual frontier in order to claim the strip of land. He was adamant in his statement that the territory belonged to Honduras and that Nicaragua was wrong as usual. He could offer no explanation why the Nicaraguans would want to move the markers other than they could not be trusted and always wanted to make trouble. When I expressed the hope that the incident could be settled amicably he said that he thought it could be providing Nicaragua would cooperate toward that end.

He has not received to date the Nicaraguan reply to his Government’s protest but expects it soon and will inform me of its contents [Page 452] when received. The Minister told me that he would bring the Department’s desire of rendering every possible assistance in avoiding serious incidents at this critical time to the attention of the President.

There has been no comment in the local press regarding the affair and I was informed that there had been none to date in Nicaragua.

In my opinion this Government will make every possible concession to prevent the incident from assuming greater proportions provided Nicaragua’s attitude is also conciliatory.