722.2315/1570a: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Peru (Norweb)28

167. The Governments of Argentina, Brazil, and the United States have agreed to instruct their diplomatic representatives in Lima and in Quito to request joint interviews with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the countries to which they are accredited. Please consult at once with your Argentine and Brazilian colleagues and, in agreement with them, request a joint interview with the Minister for Foreign Affairs. At this interview you will state the views that follow hereafter as quoted from a memorandum agreed to by the three Governments:

“At these interviews the representatives of Argentina, Brazil and the United States would first refer to the good offices tendered by the three Governments to the Governments of Ecuador and of Peru in order that they might assist in preventing the outbreak of exactly the kind of hostile incident which has now unfortunately broken out in connection with the boundary dispute.29

They would next state that both Governments accepted these good offices.

They should next remind the Minister for Foreign Affairs that the three Governments had expressed the earnest hope that the Governments of Ecuador and of Peru would take every necessary step to prevent the outbreak of hostile incidents and an aggravation of the dispute.

They should then say that official communications have been received from both the Government of Ecuador and the Government of Peru claiming that the outbreak of the present hostilities was due to the other party to the dispute. On the basis of the information now available to the three powers tendering their good offices, it will be impossible to form any final opinion as to the merits of these claims.

It would seem that the only sure way of preventing an aggravation of the present hostilities and a recurrence of these incidents would be [Page 232] for the withdrawal by each Government of its military forces a distance of 15 kilometers from the line of the so-called status quo tacitly recognized previously by both Governments. Over this area the airplanes of neither party to the dispute would pass.

If these suggestions are acceptable to the two Governments, it is urged that the Governments of Ecuador and Peru immediately sign a declaration of friendship and agree to maintain their military forces behind the lines to which they have withdrawn in accordance with the stipulation in the previous paragraph. Moreover, for the purpose of assuring the effective and prompt withdrawal of the military forces of each country from the line of the so-called status quo, military attachés of the American countries in the two capitals or other military experts will be instructed to collaborate with the authorities designated by the Governments of Ecuador and of Peru. All further assistance will be offered in every other practicable way in order to expedite a prompt cessation of the existing hostilities.[”]

  1. A similar telegram was sent on the same date to the Minister in Ecuador as telegram No. 110.
  2. On July 5, 1941, reports were received of incidents of armed conflict between Ecuador and Peru in border regions.