740.00119 Council/2–2746: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Assistant Secretary of State ( Dunn ), at London


2384. For Dunn. It is evident that prospects for agreed draft treaties (re your letter Feb. 27 to Matthews) are not reassuring, although [Page 30] Dept hopes Foreign Ministers may agree to meet at least fortnight in advance of conference to resolve as many problems as may be possible.

In these circumstances, it is felt our attitude should be that date May 1 was fixed in Moscow communiqué and conference should take place irrespective of state of readiness of drafts; that if drafts are not completed CFM will report to conference those parts of draft treaties on which agreement has been reached and state issues on which agreement is lacking; that conference will consider both agreed drafts and issues requiring agreement; and that subsequently CFM will complete drafting of treaties in accordance with terms of Moscow communiqué.

While we would prefer to go to conference in full agreement with other three powers on draft treaties based on principles of equity and justice, we would have no fear of stating openly at conference our views on issues involved in event agreement is not reached.

It seems to Dept therefore that in your conversations with Deputies you should proceed on assumption that May 1 date has been accepted by all, and that this Govt would be most surprised to hear any suggestion that conference might be postponed. In your discretion, you might suggest to Couve de Murville advisability of French Govt inquiring within next ten days through diplomatic channels re arrangements for conference, and thus making clear that French Govt is also proceeding with intention to hold conference on schedule.