824.01/415: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

666. Following is the text of the statement made by Mr. Eden42 in the House of Commons this morning in reply to a question concerning Bolivia:

“On December 20, 1943 the Bolivian Government, under General Peñaranda, which had declared war on Germany and signed the United Nations declarations some months previously, was overthrown by force, and replaced by a revolutionary Junta. Information which is available to us indicates that this development was connected with activities of subversive groups hostile to the cause of the United Nations, which are at work in the Western Hemisphere. His Majesty’s Government have been in the closest consultation on this subject with the United States Government. His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom do not recognize the Junta as the legal government of Bolivia. His Majesty’s Minister43 designated to La Paz will not therefore now proceed to take up his post.

The Governments of the United States, Brazil, Costa Rica, Cuba, Uruguay and Venezuela have all declared officially that they do not recognize the revolutionary Junta at La Paz.”

A member asked if British Government would take not only diplomatic action, but same economic action as United States towards Bolivia. Mr. Eden replied: “If you will look at the answer, you will see we are in step with the United States Government”. Asked by another member if there was Fascist infiltration through the German Embassy in Spain, and whether he would “find out what was being done not merely in Bolivia but in other parts, including Uruguay and Brazil”, Mr. Eden said: “There are no German Embassies in Uruguay or Brazil, but there is a German Embassy in South America. I hope one day we shall see that go. When that happens I think the position will improve”. Answering an inquiry as to whether the Falangists were active in all South American countries, Foreign Secretary said he believed these activities were being organized in the main by German agents.

  1. Anthony Eden, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.
  2. Thomas Ifor Rees.