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United States Department of State / Index to the executive documents of the House of Representatives for the second session of the fiftieth Congress, 1888-'90

Chili [Chile],   pp. 172-198 PDF (10.6 MB)

Page 198

been required to pay had the cases been decided by the tribunal. it isI
also stated that with the settlement of these claims the international
tribunals established by the various European Governments have ceased'
to exist, leaving the claims of the United States and Spain the only
ones still unsettled.
   The decisions and awards of the tribunals in question appear to have
 been highly unsatisfactory, many of the claims before them having been
 withdrawn to be settled elsewhere, and unfinished cases, or those not
 y et reached, being settled by a lump sum. In a previous dispatch you
 state that there would have been a general protest against the action
 of the tribunals had it not been for the course of the German Govern.
 ment, which was the first to accept a lump sum in liquidation of its
 claims, and which is supposed to have done so to the advantage of the
 claimants, though definite information as to the terms of settlement
 has not been received.
   As I informed you in my No. 73, of the 5th of December last, this De-
 partment is receiving constant complaints from claimants, who are not
 content with our answer that the appropriate moment for pressing their
 claims to a settlement has not yet arrived. To the suggestion made in
 your No. 96, of the 15th of October, 1886 (which in view of all the cir-
 cumstances was adopted by the Department), that this Government
 would be in a better position for urging such claims after the work of the
 unsatisfactory international tribunals then in existence had been corn-
 pleted, reply is made that these tribunals are now defunct, and that there
 does not appear to be any good ground for further delay on the part of
 this Government. The first point to be considered is whether it would
 b)e more advantageous to American interests to submit the claims to an
 international commission, or to accept a lump sum to be paid to Chili in
 full discharge of all claims against her by citizens of the United States.
 In the list of claims in your No. 42 of 14th January, 1886, there may
 be some susceptible of individual settlemnent, while others might be
 left to arbitration or settled by a lump sum.
 With your knowledge of the character of the claims in question, it is
hoped you will be able to agree with the Chilian Government on some
acceptable plan of settlement free from the defects of the late tribunal.
  It is desirable that this question be taken up and pushed to an issue
as rapidly as. possible.
      I am, etc.,
                                                   T. F. BAYARD.

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