868.00/3–1946: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Greece (Rankin)

333. For Grady Mission. I made the following statement at my press conference this morning:

“As friends of the Greek people, we are interested in seeing them elect a representative Government. We believe that only when the Greek people have freely expressed their will at the polls, and the Government of their choice has taken office, can the work of reconstruction, which is so vital to the welfare of Greece, go forward satisfactorily. Accordingly, this Government would like to see fair and free elections held in Greece at the earliest practicable date. The timing of the elections is, of course, a matter for the Greek Government alone to decide.

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The American Mission to observe the Greek Elections has completed its preparations, and, together with its British and French counterparts, will be at posts throughout Greece ready to discharge its observation function on March 31, the date which the Greek Government has set for the elections. This Government has absolutely no partisan interest in Greek affairs. It sincerely desires that the Greek elections be carried out by the free suffrage of the entire electorate.”