Peru registered a significant maritime victory over Chile on 27 January; a victory which proved elusive on the high seas during the War of the Pacific (1879-1883) but was achieved on terra firma in a courtroom at The Hague. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) finally brought down the curtain on six years of legal conflict when it announced its verdict on the bilateral maritime dispute brought by Peru in 2008. Both Chile’s President Sebastián Piñera and his Peruvian peer Ollanta Humala expressed their satisfaction with the ruling but the visual contrast between them was stark enough to conclude that Humala’s assessment that Peru had got 70% of what it had sought was accurate: it was a grave looking Piñera who read a public decla- ration from the La Moneda presidential palace in Santiago; a jubilant Humala who cavorted around with First Lady Nadine Heredia, cabinet ministers and congressional deputies, all smiles and hands aloft, in Lima.

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