Chile called home yesterday its ambassador to Peru to 'report' as relations frayed between the South American neighbours over their maritime territory.
"The foreign relations ministry communicates that Chile's ambassador to Peru, Mr. Cristian Barros Melet, has been called to report as of this date," the ministry said in a brief statement that did not say what the ambassador would be reporting on.
Peru published a map on Sunday defining its southern maritime limits with Chile as part of its bid to negotiate a new sea border and improve access to rich Pacific fishing waters.
Chile and Peru have bickered on and off over the sea border for years, and Peru President Alan Garcia said in June his country would take Chile to the International Court at The Hague to resolve the case.
The map drew an immediate response from Chile's foreign minister on Sunday, who voiced his government's "most formal protest".
The current sea border, a horizontal line that starts close to the two countries' land border and cuts due west across the ocean, was set in the 1950s. Peru's proposed border is a southwestern sloping line that follows the two countries' diagonal border into the Pacific Ocean.
Peru says the 1950s pacts were non-binding and rob the country of 14,630 sq miles (37,900 sq km) of rich fishing waters.
Peru and Chile are the world's top producers of fishmeal, a cattle feed, and fishing is one of the engines of Peru's $75 billion economy.