that temporary limits be named, which will abolish all difficulties of jurisdiction which might cool the spirit of cordiality which inspires the people and Governments that are neighbors and brothers.

As both Goveruments therefore agree upon the fundamental points in regard to the proceedings necessary to decide their lawsuit, it would seem conducive that the said points be put into practice; wherefore, the President of the Republic has instructed me to propose to your : excellency's Government that it authorize—which Costa Rica will likewise do-its diplomatic representative in Washington to renew the convention of arbitration in regard to the final boundaries, and while this is being perfected, to celebrate a provisional boundary convention.

This proposition from my Government, as your excellency well knows, does not signify that my Government acknowledges the invalidity of the former boundary conventions, whose force has always been upheld, as the correspondence between this department and that under the worthy charge of your excellency will show, but its constant eagerness to facilitate the prompt solution of a lawsuit, the definite end of which interests greatly both republics. Accept, etc.,


[Inclosure 2 in No. 69.- Translation.]

Mr. Jiménez to Mr. Suárez,


San Jose, February 13, 1894. MR. MINISTER: I have had the honor to receive your excellency's communication of the 12th of last January, in which you call the atten. tion of my Government to the fact that Costa Rica is committing jurisdictional acts upon the right margin of the “Sixaola,” in violation of the statu quo in force between the two countries. Therefore, my Gov. ernment, always jealous in regard to the fulfilment of its international duties, feels obliged to inform your excellency that it has not dictated any act in deterioration of the statu quo, and that in order to obtain the most accurate solution of this delicate matter, it has requested information from the respective authorities, and hopes that the Colombian Government will have the kindness to expressly state the acts which led to its reclamation, in order to procee'l according to the dictates of justice and international law.

I have also the honor to inform your excellency that my Government has named two scientific commissions, one under the charge of Naval Capt. Don Eliseo Fradin, and the other under the charge of Don Enri. que Pittier, the object of the first commission being to make a plan of the Sixaola Tarire, Tiliri or Tilorio, of the Yurquin, tributary of the latter, known in Colombia under the name of Dorado, or Doraces, aside from other rivers and places of that locality, situated in Costa Rican territory; and the object of the second commission being to astronom. ically establish the position of the Sixaola, or be it, the point at which the Tiliri or Tilorio flows into the Atlantic, and the spot at which the latter joins the Yurquin, whose right bank is considered as the limit of the statu quo; and also of the Lipurio or be it, San Bernardo, situated unquestionably in Costa Rican territory, and of other important places of that region.

The said commissions left this capital eight days before the receipt of your excellency's communication, I therefore do not believe that it conld have referred to them; but I take this opportunity to inform your excellency that these commissions have been appointed for the study of the frontier territory. After the foregoing explanation, which is a guarantee of the fair dealing of my Government, I trust that the Colombian Government will be satisfied; and with the assurances of my high appreciation and distinguished consideration, I remain, etc.,


(Inclosure 3 in No. 69.- Translation.)

Mr. Suárez to Mr. Jiménez,


Bogota, May 18, 1894. MR. MINISTER: I have the honor to refer to your excellency's notes of the 12th and 13th of last February, relative to the boundary controversy now pendiug between Colombia and Costa Rica.

In your first note your excellency accepts, in the name of your Government, this Government's proposal to renew the treaty in regard to the arbitration of the boundaries and to decide upon a provisional frontier; in your seconu letter your excellency explains certain acts touching the interruption of the statu quo, which has been in force since 1880, in regard to the zone of territory at present in dispute between Colombia and Costa Rica.

In regard to this last point, your excellency assures my Government that it duly appreciates the fact that Costa Rica has not performed, is not performing, and will not perform any act in deterioration of the statu quo—that is to say, it has not performed acts of dominion, jurisdiction, or occupation in the territory extending along the right bank of the river Sixaola.

This declaration is very welcome to the Colombian Government, which hopes that certain public acts, such as those referring to the succession of Temistocles Peñaranda, and others about which the authorities of Bocas del Toro have complained, committed by citizens of Costa Rica, will have been distinguished by the Government of San Jose; it also hopes that explicit instructions will be given the commission of engineers, about whom your excellency speaks in your note of February 13, not on any account to extend operations to the territory on this side of the said river, for such an act would violate the obligations of the two nations, and render impossible further negotiations, as I have already had the honor to inform your excellency.

I improve this opportunity to call your excellency's attention to an act which can also hinder the termination of the matter which occupies us, unless immediately rectified by the Costa Rican Government. I refer to a map published not long ago, in which, instead of continuing to designate the boundaries between the two countries by the line which marks the most extreme claims of Costa Rica, it has been advanced much more toward the east, so that not only the possible rights of each nation are not taken into consideration but an evident act of intrusion has been committed upon territory which has not been in dispute.

The Colombian Government hopes that your excellency's Government will rectify as soon as possible this error, and declare that it is without signification, not only in regard to the rights, but also the pretensions of Costa Rica respecting Colombian dominions. As soon as this has been rectified this ministry will be pleased to enter into negotiations with that under your excellency's worthy charge about the settlement of the provisional boundary, and the removal of the arbitration treaty in regard to definite frontiers, to which end the respective commission will shortly be given to the envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of Colombia in Washington. I have, etc.,



Mr. Rengifo to Mr. Gresham.


LEGATION OF COLOMBIA, Washington, September 21, 1894. (Received September 22.) Mr. SECRETARY: With deep grief I have the honor to inform you of the death of His Excellency Dr. Rafael Nuñez, titular President of the Republic of Colombia, which took place in the city of Cartagena on the 18th instant.

As your excellency is aware, His Excellency Dr. Nuñez did not dis. charge the duties of the executive office during his last term of office, which began in August, 1892, and the duties of the office of President of the Republic have been and will continue to be discharged by His Excellency Miguel Antonio Caro, the vice-president, who is the person designated by the constitution to succeed Dr. Nuñez. With sentiments, etc.,

JULIO RENGIFO, Chargé d'Affaires ad interim.

Mr. Gresham to Mr. Rengifo.


Washington, September 25, 1894. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note of the 21st instant, officially informing me of the death of His Excellency Señor Dr. Don Rafael Nuñez, the titular President of the Republic of Colombia.

I beg of you to make known to the minister for foreign affairs of Colombia the deep sorrow with which this Government learns of this sad event. Accept, sir, etc.,



Mr. Sleeper to Mr. Gresham. No. 75.)


Bogota, October, 1894. (Received November 19.) SIR: I have taken from the report of the minister of foreign affairs a synopsis of matters which appear to me to be of some interest to the Government of the United States. I shall also forward the printed report of the minister, in order that the Department may inform itself more particularly upon any subject.

1. Boundaries between Colombia and Costa Rica.

[Translation.) At your sessions of 1892 you were informed of the modification introduced into the proceedings relating to our boundaries with our neigh bors on the north, in consequence of the arbitration treaties having lapsed. The causes of such lapse could not be more weighty, if we look at the letter and spirit of the treaties, nor more worthy of consideration, in view of the necessity of removing all danger of inefficacy in so important a matter as that of our northern frontier.

To maintain that treaties which are void, or of very doubtful force, may serve as titles to extremely valuable rights, is to maintain that a question of this gravity may remain unsettled, or liable to future objec. tions. If the admission of the lapse of the treaties involved the breaking off of all amicable negotiations concerning the pending dispute, there would be some reason for claiming that those agreements, however defective, should continue to serve as a basis in this matter; þut, as Colombia has declared her wish that they be renewed and amended, all claim to the contrary fails to be just or proper.

In the correspondence, which I have the honor to transmit herewith, is set forth in detail the course of these negotiations in the last phase wbich they have assumed. Our Government wishes the question of our boundary with Costa Rica to be settled in the manner prescribed by justice, to wit, by renewing and amending the treaties as experience demands, and at the time and place which may be most convenient to both countries.

It is desired that the treaties should contain stipulations relative to the practical execution of the award, to the costs of the litigation, to the enlargement of the powers which the arbitrator should have, to harmonize, as far as possible, the chief interests of the parties; and our Government, in acting in this way, is actuated by friendship toward Costa Rica, and acts in confidence of its rights, strengthened by new evidence.

The Costa Rican Government has at last assented to these proposals, as well as to that which has been made to it to fix upon a temporary boundary intended to put an end to the frequent complaints addressed to it by Colombia of the violations of the status quo to which both countries are pledged with respect to the possession of the zone now in dispute.

Complaints of this kind were mutual some time ago, owing to the surveys made by the Panama Canal Company in the districts adjacent to the Almirante Lagoon. The San José Government remonstrated at tbat time to the Colombian Government respecting the duties imposed

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by the status quo which had been agreed upon. The explanations on our part, however, were so candid and sincere that Costa Rica has not since found it necessary to make the slightest complaint of Colombia's proceedings.

This has not been the case with regard to our rights to present possession of a part of the zone in dispute. The authorities of Panama and Bocas del Toro, the periodical publications of the country, the documents published by Costa Rica, and respectable private individuals

, are continually informing the Government that agents of the neighbor ing Republic, by what authority is not known, are committing acts of possession incompatible with the duties which have been expressly acknowledged.

On the Atlantic side, the Costa Rican Government has definitively admitted that the boundary of present possession is formed by the Sixaola River, so that it has no right to exercise acts of jurisdiction on the right bank of that river ; but, notwithstanding this, Costa Rican agents or individuals have recently made surveys and drawn up maps on this side of the Sixaola.

On the Pacific side, the Costa Rican Government admitted, as far back as 1880, that it could not occupy territory situated on this side of Punta-Burica, for, at the demand of our Government, it vacated that territory in a manner which may be designated as solemn; and yet it has just been learned, through a perfectly reliable channel, that in that territory, exclusively under the jurisdiction of Colombia, colonists are settling, under the protection, as is asserted, of the San José Government and without the consent of the Colombian Government. 1 To these two species of violation of the status quo must be added another, which affects the whole of the boundary between the two countries. The Costa Rican Government recently published a geographical map of its territory in which its southern frontier does not even coincide with the extreme claims stipulated in the old treaties, but is drawn much farther this way than the straight line connecting Punta-Burica with Escudo de Veraguas, thus embracing a part of the Colombian territory which has not only been always under the jurisdiction and in the possession of the Republic, but forms a part of its undisputed territory.

These acts would not benefit Costa Rica, even if the arbitration treaties were in force, but would be prejudicial to her rights and interests, because they would prove, before the arbitrator, her disregard of indisputable and acknowledged duties. Notice having been given of the abrogation of those treaties, and Costa Rica being interested in their renewal, it is hard to understand why, at the very time that she is negotiating for such renewal, she puts an insuperable obstacle to it; for Colombia can not consent to the amicable act of fixing upon a temporary boundary and renewing the arbitration compromise, until such irregularities have ceased.

This consideration has been the reason that the Colombian Government has hitherto confined itself to repeatedly calling the attention of the Government of the neighboring Republic (to these facts); and it has received from it the most satisfactory assurances in the sense asserted by Colombia. It is, however, to be presumed that the intentions of that Government have been thwarted by its agents, as several circumstances render it certain that the duties relative to the present possession of the disputed territory have not been thoroughly performed.

The theoretical statement of our rights and the protests against the

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