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science of my people. Peace is well worth another effort which might be added to those already made by my country to preserve same. This is how my Government understands it and although the previous and present attitude of Bolivia does not warrant any hopes it has instructed me to transmit its acceptance of the good offices offered by the Conference declaring loyally that it has ordered the mobilization of the army although as a simple defensive measure because the grave circumstances created by the conduct of Bolivia so demand it. I believe I fulfill a duty in informing that Conference that the illustrious Executive of the Argentine nation being deeply concerned about the situation created, offered his mediation which my Government hastened to accept and to which Bolivia has not assented until
724.3415/302: Telegram The Bolivian Minister for Foreign Affairs (Elio) to the Chairman
of the International Conference of American States on Conciliation and Arbitration (Kellogg)
La Paz, December 18, 1928.
[Received December 1847 p. m.] I have the honor of informing Your Excellency that the Government of Bolivia accepts the good offices of the Conference on Conciliation and Arbitration presided over by Your Excellency. In this regrettable conflict created by the unjustified aggression of Paraguay, the Government of Bolivia has confined itself to maintaining the attitude imposed upon it by the inescapable need of safeguarding its dignity and sovereignty which is adjusted to the strictest international principles and practices.
I must record the fact that Bolivia has not mobilized her Army, having confined herself to entrusting to her military guards in El Chaco the care and defense of the outposts threatened by Paraguay. The Conference knows that Paraguay after attacking Bolivia and with the purpose of dissimulating the gravity of her offense immediately had recourse to requesting the application of the Pan American Treaty of May 3, 1923, which had not been ratified by Bolivia, and which it was not possible for her to accept in view of the serious crisis of public opinion provoked in my country by that act of violence that denies the assurances of correction and of respect for international duties on the part of Paraguay.
On entering upon the good offices Bolivia requires that the attack to the Vanguardia outpost be investigated in the first term without involving in this preliminary issue the basic questions of the dispute which are being submitted to arbitration in accordance with the procedure established by the Argentine suggestion of December, 1927, accepted by both countries.
I wish to inform Your Excellency that my Government has conveyed to the eminent President of Argentina, Señor Irigoyen, its acquiescence to his good offices in order to return to the procedure agreed upon in Buenos Aires for the settlement of the dispute between Bolivia and Paraguay.
Upon accepting the good offices of the Conference on Conciliation and Arbitration, Bolivia renders homage to the spirit of America and reiterates her adherence to the principles of justice with which her political conduct is inspired. I salute [etc.]
TOMAS M. ELIO
724.3415/290 : Telegram
The Chargé in France (Armour) to the Secretary of State
PARIS, December 18, 1928–8 p. m.
[Received 10:55 p. m.69] 419. Minister for Foreign Affairs summoned me to the Foreign Office this afternoon and informed me that as President of the Council of the League of Nations he wished our Government to be thoroughly conversant of everything that had been done up to the present by the Council of the League in endeavoring to settle the differences between Paraguay and Bolivia.
For this purpose he handed to me the correspondence exchanged between the President of the Council and the Paraguayan and Bolivian Ministers. These documents consist of the following:
[Here follows a list of 14 documents. For the texts, see League of Nations, Documentation Concerning the Dispute Between Bolivia and Paraguay (C. 619.M.195.1928.VII), sections 3 to 15, pages 3-11.]
As I am forwarding the only copies I have of these documents by the pouch which is just closing I have only been able to glance hastily at them. I imagine however that the Department is aware of their content if not their full text with perhaps the exception of documents numbers 13 and 14 which are of the most immediate interest." Number 13 is Bolivia's reply to M. Briand informing him that the Bolivian Government has given orders to the chiefs of military posts to abstain from any advance or attack and to confine themselves to defensive measures. Document number 14 is the Paraguayan reply
** Telegram in two sections.
Secs. 14 and 15, respectively, in League of Nations, Documentation Concerning the Dispute Between Bolivia and Paraguay.
and reiterates Paraguay's acceptance of the good offices of the Pan American Conference of Arbitration.
With these documents M. Briand handed me an unsigned memorandum headed “League of Nations” and dated Paris, December 18, 1928, a translation of which follows:
“If, in the very next days, the two Governments do not accept, under one form or another, a mediation which will allow of foregoing the regulation by specific means 71 of the demand for reparations presented by the Bolivian Government and consequently excluding the possibility of new acts of hostility, the Council will find it difficult to avoid holding an extraordinary session, in fact it will be obliged to study the measures which it will be necessary to take either because war will have begun-or because it will be on the point of breaking out-between two Members of the League of Nations each of which seems to recognize no other mutual contractual obligation not to resort to war than the one resulting from the Covenant of the League of Nations by which they are equally bound.
The Council believes it to be true that in two directions, with high authority, efforts are now being put forth with a view to avoiding war and to solving by specific means existing difficulties. It is in this sense that the Argentine Government and the Pan American Arbitration Conference, now meeting at Washington under the Presidency of the Secretary of State of the United States, are acting. However, the Council has not received any official information from either.
The Argentine Government and the Governments represented at the Pan-American Conference are at the present moment completely informed as to the steps taken by the Council and the answers of the Governments of the two countries. In the interests of peace it seems essential in the eyes of the Council to coordinate perfectly the efforts of all those who are endeavoring to obtain a settlement of the controversy by specific (pacific] means.
For these reasons the President of the Council of the League of Nations, charged by the Council with following the development of the controversy, would consider it of the highest importance for the preservation of peace the supreme goal which all must pursue that the Government of the United States should be good enough to inform him as to its views with respect to the best measures to be taken by all those who are endeavoring to insure a specific (pacific] settlement of the controversy."
It was explained to me that the last paragraph asking for the views of "the Government of the United States” means our Government in its capacity as furnishing the President of the Pan-American Conference.
I was told that the Argentine Ambassador was handed an identical communication and also that the Paraguayan and Bolivian representatives had been respectively furnished with a copy of documents 13 and 14, supra. [Paraphrase.] The press has not been informed regarding the unsigned covering memorandum. The Foreign Office feared that it might be construed as a diplomatic note; whereas it was stressed that the communication of Briand had merely been recorded in this form because it afforded the surest means of avoiding any crossing of wires and at the same time elicited the fullest exchange of views in order to arrive at the end which was sought in common by all of the mediating agencies. [End paraphrase.]
11 Phrase garbled in transmission. The League of Nations text reads: "such mediation as will afford a likelihood of settling by pacific means."
724.3415/801 : Telegram
The Chargé in France (Armour) to the Secretary of State
PARIS, December 20, 1928–8 p. m.
[Received 8:02 p. m.] 427. My telegram No. 419, December 18, 8 p. m. This evening I was summoned to the Foreign Office by Briand. He informed me that now that the affair had been settled he could not let the occasion pass without congratulating you on the successful outcome.
I have interpreted his message as indicating a desire that you should know that the Council of the League considers that with the cessation of hostilities and the acceptance by both Governments of the good offices tendered by the Pan-American Conference such part as it has played in the matter has come to an end.
I told Briand that I had not failed to communicate to you his previous message which seemed to call for a reply (see the last paragraph of memorandum quoted in my telegram No. 419), but he indicated quite plainly that in the light of subsequent events this was no longer necessary.
I presume, however, that you will want to have some message conveyed to him in acknowledgment of this gesture on his part.
I presume that the Embassy may give any such message to the local press unless instructed to the contrary.
724.3415/391 : Telegram
The Secretary of State to the Chargé in France (Armour)
WASHINGTON, December 21, 1928–4 p.m. 430. Your 427, December 20, 8 p. m. The good offices of the Conference having been accepted no further observations would appear to be required.
Colombia and Nicaragua
The Minister in Nicaragua (Eberhardt) to the Secretary of State
MANAGUA, February 4, 1928–9 a. m.
[Received 12: 55 p. m.] 67. The following telegram was sent Havana:
For White.73 Your January 28, 7 p. m. At the request of Colombian Minister I called upon the President with him yesterday and repeated what I had already told the President about the Department's viewing with favor a settlement along the lines which Colombia had proposed. The President said that he would be very glad to have the matter settled in this way and the negotiations can be taken up immediately upon Cuadra Pasos’ 74 return. He pointed out, however, that it will probably be impossible to conclude a treaty before the end of the present session of Congress which will mean that the matter will go over to the new administration unless a special session should be held.
The Secretary of State to the Minister in Nicaragua (Eberhardt) No. 333
WASHINGTON, March 23, 1928. Sir: Referring to previous correspondence on the subject of a treaty between Nicaragua and Colombia to settle the dispute between those countries regarding sovereignty over the Mosquito Coast, Great and Little Corn Islands, and the San Andres Archipelago, there is enclosed herewith a draft of a treaty which the Colombian Minister has left with the Department,saying that it will be proposed by the Colombian Minister in Nicaragua to the Nicaraguan Government to provide for a settlement of these controversies.
You may, if consulted by the Nicaraguan Government, state that this Government feels that the proposed treaty offers a very satisfactory and equitable solution of this controversy and it therefore hopes that it will receive the approval of the Nicaraguan Government.
There are likewise enclosed copies of a proposed exchange of notes between the Colombian Minister and the Secretary of State,78
12 Continued from Foreign Relations, 1927, vol. 1, pp. 322–331.
* Francis White, Assistant Secretary of State, then attending the Sixth International Conference of American States.
* Nicaraguan Minister for Foreign Affairs, then in Habana as chairman of the Nicaraguan delegation to the Sixth International Conference of American States.
Draft not printed; it was signed without change on March 24. See p. 703. Vol. I, pp. 637 ff.