13 January 2000
Original: English


 This document is being distributed to the permanent missions and
will be presented to the Permanent Council of the Organization.


On December 6, 1999, the Permanent Council of the Organization met in special session to consider the situation that had arisen over the ratification of a maritime delimitation treaty between Colombia and Honduras.

On December 7, the Permanent Council approved a resolution in support of the Governments of Honduras and Nicaragua, CP/RES. 757 (1216/99), which asked the Secretary General, acting with the greatest possible urgency and with the concurrence of the Governments of Honduras and Nicaragua, to appoint a special representative whose mandate it would be "exclusively to evaluate the situation, facilitate dialogue, and formulate recommendations aimed at easing tension and preventing acts that could affect peace in the Hemisphere." The Resolution also requested that the representative of the Secretary General report to the Council on the development and the results of the measures taken to fulfil the Council's mandate. 

On December 9, the Secretary General appointed Ambassador Luigi Einaudi as his Special Representative in accordance with the Resolution in question.


Immediately after accepting the mission from the Secretary General, Ambassador Einaudi met with delegations of the Parties to the dispute. On the evening of December 9, the Special Representative met with a Nicaraguan delegation headed by Guillermo Arguello, Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs who was accompanied by Francisco Aguirre, Nicaragua's Ambassador to the United States. On December 10, Ambassador Einaudi meet with a delegation from Honduras headed by Jorge Arturo Reina, Minister Advisor to the President, and accompanied by Ambassador Policarpo Callejas, Chief of Staff of the Foreign Minister. The delegations were accompanied by their Permanent Representatives to the OAS, Ambassador Laura Nu�ez of Honduras and Ambassador Alvaro Sevilla of Nicaragua. Both delegations expressed clearly their desire to find a peaceful resolution to the crisis and to work quickly towards deflating tensions in the region. 

In order to evaluate the situation on the ground, Ambassador Einaudi traveled to both countries December 15 to 18, undertaking a heavy schedule of consultations and meetings with all sectors of Nicaraguan and Honduran society. In both cases the schedule of meetings was ably arranged by the Directors of the Offices of the General Secretariat in Honduras and Nicaragua in consultation with the respective foreign ministries. 

In Nicaragua, the Special Representative met with President Arnoldo Alem�n; the Foreign Minister, Eduardo Montealegre, and Deputy Foreign Minister, Guillermo Arguello; the civilian Minister of Defense, Jos� Antonio Alvarado; the Army Chief, General Cuadra, and the appointed successor, General Carri�n. Ambassador Einaudi also met with a broad spectrum of civil society representatives including Cardinal Obando y Bravo; the poet Pablo Antonio Cuadra; opposition leaders including Daniel Ortega and Miguel D�Escoto; and the former President of Nicaragua, Violeta Barrios Chamorro. 

In Honduras, Ambassador Einaudi met with President Carlos Flores, the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Roberto Flores Bermudez; Jorge Arturo Reina, Minister Advisor; and Policarpo Callejas. The Special Representative also met with former Presidents of Honduras Carlos Roberto Reina, Jos� Ascona and Rafael Leonardo Callejas; the civilian Minister of Defense, Edgardo Dumas; representatives of the business community, of non-governmental organizations, the Roman Catholic Archbishop Rodriguez and Bishop Corriveaux, plus the President of the National Assembly, Rafael Pineda. 

During these consultations the Special Representative found a climate of tension in both countries, but one which was accompanied by a desire to advance respective claims through peaceful means and within established norms of international law. In meetings with the Ambassadors of OAS member and observer States accredited to both Managua and Tegucigalpa, Ambassador Einaudi found total agreement that countries struggling to emerge from the devastation caused by hurricane Mitch should focus their efforts at cooperation rather than conflict. 

Building on the momentum generated by these consultations and in order to move as fast as possible to reach agreement on mechanisms to lower tensions, the Special Representative called for direct dialogue between the Parties in the period between Christmas and New Year. A meeting was held December 29 and 30, 1999, in Miami, Florida, at the headquarters of the Secretariat of the Free Trade Area of the Americas. 

Following two days of intense discussions, the Foreign Ministers and the Special Representative agreed on a framework to separate military forces and develop confidence and security-building measures while the underlying issues are addressed in accordance with international law. The agreement was signed and made public in the form of the attached Communiqu�. 

On January 12 and 13, 2000, a second round of meetings between the Special Representative and the two Foreign Ministers was held at OAS headquarters to develop mechanisms to implement the agreement.

/1  The original language of the attached communique is Spanish.



 Miami, Florida, December 30, 1999 

The Foreign Ministers of Honduras, Roberto Flores Berm�dez, and of Nicaragua, Eduardo Montealegre Rivas, met in the city of Miami, Florida, U.S.A., on December 29 and 30, 1999, with Luigi Einaudi, Special Representative of the Organization of American States (OAS). In compliance with resolution 757, adopted by the Permanent Council of the hemispheric organization last December 7, the purpose of the discussions was to identify measures and actions to eliminate existing tensions between both countries, prevent actions that could affect regional peace, and promote good neighborly relations. 

1. As a result of these conversations, which took place in an atmosphere of mutual respect, an agreement was reached for the immediate separation of military forces, and to that end the Parties agreed to:

a. define and establish a military exclusion zone in the Caribbean Sea; 

b. immediately freeze, along and near the land border, the presence of military personnel and border posts at the positions and numbers that existed on September 1, 1999; and

 c. recommence the process of laying marker buoys in the Gulf of Fonseca, in accordance with the calendar previously established by both countries. To that end, the Parties will adopt the necessary measures to guarantee the security of the technical personnel who perform the work of laying the buoys.

2. The specific courses of action for implementing the confidence-building and tension-reducing measures in paragraph 1 will be negotiated in a way that permits the verification of their compliance by third parties, and that can also:

a. provide security to fishermen; and

b. prevent incidents that threaten the security of communities, particularly indigenous and rural, along the border.

3. The Foreign Ministers reaffirmed the will of their respective countries to peacefully resolve their differences, and recognize the usefulness of having submitted those related to maritime areas in the Caribbean Sea to the International Court of Justice for a decision.

 4. The Foreign Ministers also agreed to seek and continue to use mechanisms and other modalities of existing jurisdictional and political resources within the Central American Integration System that provide for peacefully resolving regional differences.

5. The Foreign Ministers and the Special Representative agreed to meet January 12-13, 2000, at the headquarters of the Organization of American States to continue developing measures that foster confidence between both Republics. 

6. The Special Envoy will inform the Organization of American States and the media about the agreements that the Foreign Ministers of Honduras and Nicaragua reach on the above-mentioned subjects throughout the course of the scheduled sessions.

Roberto Flores Berm�dez
Foreign Minister of Honduras

Eduardo Montealegre Rivas
Foreign Minister of Nicaragua

Luigi R. Einaudi
Special Representative of the Organization of American States

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