825.5045/6–1347: Telegram

The Ambassador in Chile (Bowers) to the Secretary of State


477. Late last night government declared Santiago province an “emergency zone” for initial period 30 days following armed attacks yesterday evening against busses carrying armed guards by striking Communist-controlled bus drivers in four sections of city. Army now in charge with General Rafael Fernandez commanding second division named “Jefe de Plaza”. Armed forces called to barracks. Interior Minister Cuevas stated government had proof attack planned at meeting of Communist strikers June 11.

Fire from strikers returned by Army and carabineros after dispersal attempts failed. Four bystanders killed, several wounded.

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All papers except Communist El Siglo fix responsibility on Communists. Socialist La Opinion report headlined “Communist rebellion” states Communists attempted revolt using bus strike as pretext.

City calm this morning with busses operating under armed guard and authorities in full control.