Peru declares Chile spying row over

Peruvian President Ollanta Humala speaks during a press conference in his office at the presidential palace in Lima on March 2, 2015 (AFP Photo/Cris Bouroncle)

Lima (AFP) - Peru said Tuesday it had received a satisfactory explanation from Chile after accusing it of spying and would begin resuming normal relations, sending its ambassador back to Santiago.

In a statement that gave little detail on what finally ended the South American showdown, Peruvian President Ollanta Humala said he had ordered the "gradual reestablishment of ties with Chile to the same level as before this unfortunate incident."

Relations between the two countries soured in February when Peru said it had arrested three members of the Peruvian navy for selling intelligence to Chile from 2005 to 2012.

Soon after, Lima recalled its ambassador to Santiago.

In response, Chile has sent Peru three letters, in which it provided "satisfactions," or satisfactory explanations, Humala said, without going into detail.

He thanked his Chilean counterpart Michelle Bachelet for her "constructive attitude of dialogue in deploring these incidents."

Peru insisted during the row that it had proof of espionage, including text messages exchanged between the two countries' naval intelligence chiefs in which the Chilean official allegedly admitted to spying.

The two neighbors have a history of rocky relations, including a war in the late 19th century and a dispute over their maritime border that was resolved last year by the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

But they have extensive trade ties and are both members of the Pacific Alliance bloc, along with Colombia and Mexico.