What happened to UK Ambassador to Peru Charles Wallace’s telegram, sent to London on 1st May 1982?

In this excerpt from the MargaretThatcher.org website, which contains documents released under the 30-year rule in 2012, there are a large number of “Lima Telegrams” (underlined in red) sent during the Falklands Conflict. As tensions had mounted, the Peruvian President Fernando Berlaunde Terry had been engaged in drawing up a peace plan aimed at taking the heat out of the situation.

The following year, as election fever gripped Britain, Margaret Thatcher claimed on BBC TV on 24th May 1983 that London knew nothing about the Peruvian peace proposals that were drawn up at midday local time on 1st May 1982. On the same day, in the Peruvian capital, Lima, the details of the peace plan had been passed to British Ambassador to Peru Charles Wallace, part of whose function was to relay the details immediately to London.

Even 40 years ago, telegrams were a quick and extremely reliable method of transmitting textual information accurately. The process should not have taken more than a few minutes to complete.

However, despite all the involved nations’ hopes for peace, orders were given to the nuclear submarine HMS Conqueror to sink the Argentine cruiser ARA Belgrano on 2nd May 1982. 368 Argentine sailors died. Mrs Thatcher claimed here on BBC Television that news of the peace proposals were not received in London until three hours after the attack, which would have corresponded to an inconceivable delay of 17 hours.

Even so, 40 years later, there appears to be no record of the telegram being received.

What happened to it?

What happened to Ambassador Charles Wallace’s telegram, sent on 1st May 1982?

About Wirral In It Together

Campaigner for open government. Wants senior public servants to be honest and courageous. It IS possible!
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1 Response to What happened to UK Ambassador to Peru Charles Wallace’s telegram, sent to London on 1st May 1982?

  1. Pingback: The Serialisation of “Return to Bomb Alley – The Falklands Deception” – Part Two | Wirral In It Together

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