President stonewalls on Chile border dispute

President Alan García confirmed yesterday that his government is still evaluating the possibility of taking Peru’s maritime border dispute with Chile to
The Hague.
While visiting a social project in San Juan de Lurigancho, he said that such international affairs must be treated with the utmost discretion, saying that he would not give information to the press until a decision had been made. While Chile maintains that the border was laid out in the treaties of 1952 and 1954,
Peru maintains that it was never agreed upon by the two countries and that the two treaties were fishing agreements and not statements of border sovereignty.
Sovereignty over the region was largely decided in the War of the Pacific (1879-1884), when Chile won a large area of mineral-rich land from a combined Peruvian-Bolivian force, leaving
Bolivia landlocked. The current dispute regards a tiny area of land but a large and highly productive maritime area.
President García stated that Chile is a fundamental partner of
Peru in job creation, being a major source of international investment, and therefore told journalists that talks will continue “without complications” and without mixing topics, “because the maritime dispute is a long-term problem.”
In coming days Peruvian exterior relations minister José Antonio García Belaunde will appear before congress to explain the government’s delay in taking this dispute to
The Hague for resolution.

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