Treaty Between Bolivia And Chile Essay

1839 words - 7 pages

Today's global situation is one diametrically different form that of a century ago, the politics and economics of globalization have driven the world to mold into regional blocs of interests and interdependence among nations, which has unequivocally traduced in these last years, in that no conflict between nations falls "beyond the reach of the International Community" (Calvert, 76), especially if it poses a threat to the existent peace milieu, principally in the south American region.The following analysis will attempt to objectify the boundary conflict between Bolivia and Chile. Although the Bolivian claim of right to access coasts that have been lost to Chile for more than one hundred years, the new ideals of continental integration and the desire to create more solid routes of economic channels, Bolivian claims of sovereign access to the Pacific have gained steam in International Forums. The repercussions of access to the Pacific, by Bolivia, would be momentous not only for this severely underdeveloped nation but also to international law as it makes way for greater cooperation and understanding amongst brother nations.Prior to the 20th century the Bolivian territory extended to the Pacific and included most of the coast of the Atacama Desert and the port of Antofagasta. The discovery of rich nitrate deposits in the Atacama desert and rising border tensions led the outbreak of war between Chile and Bolivia (1879-1883) (Querejazu) Chile's victory in this war resulted in Bolivia's loss of its outlet to the Pacific (400 km of coastline), along with 158.000 sq. km. of territory (Perez del Castillo, 12). Efforts, mainly political, to regain some outlet to the sea failed. And a revision of the resulting treaty, after the war, (Tratado de Paz y Amistad y Límites) that has existed since the year 1904, has been requested by Bolivia on the grounds that it was signed under the woe of force, and therefore lacks legitimacy (Perez de Castillo, 13). Chiles' reluctance to discuss sovereignty with Bolivia over its lost coastline has proven to be not so much a failure of bilateral relations, given the diplomatic silence between the two nations but a conflict were the pressure from International Community failed to reaching beyond the conventional boundaries of statehood.Brief HistoryWhen the time came for the Andean nations to claim their sovereignty, new territorial circumscriptions for emerging states where based on the "Uti Possidetis Juris of 1810" principle, irrefutable foundation of the American International Public Law (Aravena, 3). By definition this principle is the basis of a treaty which leaves belligerents mutually in possession of what they have acquired by their arms during the war (Goertz, 56). A type of veto arranged to one who was in possession of an immovable thing, in order that he might be declared the legal possessor (Goertz, 57). This assertion could be made on the basis that prior to the occupation of Bolivian coasts Chile had...

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