Statement of V. M. Molotov to the Heads of the Three Governments Concerning the Meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, July 27, 1945
The following questions remain on the agenda of the meeting of Foreign Ministers:
(1) Regarding unsettled questions it was stated that up to the present time the following unsettled questions remain:
- regarding the economic principles with relation to Germany;
- regarding German reparations;
- regarding Italian and Austrian reparations;
- regarding European oil supplies;
- regarding the acceptance of Italy and other former satellites as members of the United Nations Organization;
- regarding the implementation of the Yalta Declaration on Liberated Europe;
- regarding the lightening of the armistice conditions for Italy and other former satellites;
- regarding the export of oil equipment from Rumania;
- regarding the western frontiers of Poland;
- regarding collaboration in the solving of immediate European economic problems;
- regarding military [wart] criminals;
- regarding the transfer of Germans from Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary;
- regarding the additions [addition?] to the political principles of [for?] the treatment of Germany of two points taken from point 13 concerning the economic principles;
- regarding the German fleet;
- regarding internal [inland] waterways.
(2) Regarding the admission of Italy and other countries which have concluded an armistice and which have become co-belligerents on the side of the Allies into the United Nations Organization.
The Secretary of State of the USA, Mr. Byrnes, stated that if agreement between the Soviet and British Delegations on the wording of the document on this question is not reached, he, with the approval of the President of the USA, proposed to withdraw completely this question from the agenda of the Conference. Mr. Byrnes added that according to his opinion it was first of all necessary to examine the [Page 446] vitally important questions, namely, the questions concerning reparations, the German fleet and the western frontiers of Poland. Mr. [Sir Alexander] Cadogan proposed to change the wording of the last phrase of the third paragraph, as introduced by the Soviet Delegation, by the following phrase:
“The conclusion of peace treaties with responsible democratic governments in the states will permit the three Governments to renew normal diplomatic relations with them and to support proposals on their side to become members of the United Nations Organization.”
V. M. Molotov stated that this amendment was unacceptable.
It was agreed that since the meeting of the three Ministers could not attain agreement on this question, it should be referred for settlement to the Chiefs of the three States.
(3) Regarding German Reparations.
V. M. Molotov stated that the Soviet Delegation considered the work of the Reparations Committee unsatisfactory and proposed that the question of reparations from Germany be examined immediately at the meeting of the three Ministers. This proposal did not evoke any objection. V. M. Molotov thereupon read point 4 of the Crimea Protocol on reparations and, referring to Mr. Pauley’s statement in the Reparations Committee to the effect that he withdrew the agreement of the Government of the USA to the decision set forth in this point, inquired of Mr. Byrnes whether the Government of the USA continued to support the Crimea decisions on this question, or whether it had changed its position.
Mr. Byrnes answered that this was a misunderstanding. The Government of the USA had agreed in the Crimea to accept the figure of $20,000,000,000 as a basis for discussion, but since then the Soviet and Allied Armies had caused great destruction in Germany, several areas had been taken away from Germany, and now it was practically impossible to proceed from that general figure which had been adopted by the American Delegation at Yalta as a possible basis for discussion.
Mr. Cadogan stated that he would refrain from submitting any proposals.
On the proposal of Mr. Byrnes it was recognized as advisable to postpone the examination of this question until the next meeting of the three Ministers, after which this question should be reported to the Heads of the three Government[s].
(4) Concerning Austrian and Italian Reparations.
V. M. Molotov proposed to accept as a basis for the further study of this question the proposals on reparations from Austria and reparations from Italy submitted by the Soviet Delegation (see enclosures [Page 447] Nos. 1 and 2).2 Mr. Byrnes stated that the American Delegation did not consider it possible to exact from Austria and Italy reparations in the guise of current production. In the opinion of the American Delegation it was only possible to remove at one time equipment of the war industries which could not be used for peaceful objectives. Mr. Cadogan stated that the British Delegation supported the opinion of the Delegation of the USA.
In view of the non-obtaining of agreement, it was decided to report the manifested disagreement to the Heads of the three Governments.
(5) Regarding the Economic Principles with Relation to Germany.
On the proposal of Mr. Byrnes discussion of this question was postponed.
(6) Regarding European Oil Supplies.
The discussion of this question was postponed since the Commission had not concluded its work.
(7) Regarding Economic Collaboration in Europe.
It was decided to approve the report of the commission on this question and to inform the Heads of the three Governments accordingly (see enclosure No. 33).
- Molotov acted as Rapporteur for this meeting and read his report at the meeting of Heads of Government on July 28 (see post, p. 459).↩
- Documents Nos. 769 and 1099, post, respectively.↩
- Document No. 1162, post.↩