760F.6315/3–1647: Telegram

The Acting United States High Commissioner for Austria (Keyes) to the United States High Commissioner for Austria (Clark) at Moscow91


P 6899. Austrian-Czechoslovak negotiations were held this week in Vienna on 6 frontier rectifications outlined in Czech memorandum presented to CFM London,92 together with a new seventh point concerning proposed power station near Lipno.

Above first stage of negotiations was completed March 14 after 4 days of satisfactory discussion of mutually agreeable atmosphere. Results are incorporated in protocol of that date which Austrian and Czech negotiators will now submit to their respective governments. Copy being sent to you by courier plane.93

Tentative agreement was reached on all points presented to CFM except on the cession of territory:

South of the Danube and
West of the March, at the junction of Danube and March.

Austrian cabinet decided that while it wished to meet Czech desires to a reasonable extent, it could not agree cession of these fairly large areas of Austrian territory. Czechs then suggested alternative cession of much smaller area at river junction. Austrians said they would prefer not to cede territory, for one reason because that would cut them off from access to the proposed Danube Oder Canal, but would be glad to have experts study every possible way in which the technical needs of Czechs for canal construction and maintenances be met on Austrian territory without changing sovereignty. Both delegations now contemplate [Page 504] doing this, subject to yield of Czech Government on protocol of March 14.

Latter includes statement by Austrian Delegation that is proceeding in effort to meet Czech desires on assumption that while negotiations continue on remaining points Czech Government will refrain from raising them for international consideration, in particular in connection with the Austrian Treaty Conference, and that if Czech Government does so raise them, all six points should be considered as a whole and Austrian Government would not be bound on the concessions it had made on the four points already tentatively settled.

Decision of Czech Government whether to continue negotiations or raise question at Moscow is now being awaited. Meanwhile Chief Czech Negotiator, Fischer (Fisa) has left Vienna to go to Prague and thence to Moscow.94

  1. The source text, an information copy, which was transmitted to the Department of State through the War Department as message CM IN 2960, 17 March 1947, has been collated with the copy of the telegram in the Vienna Legation Files—1947, 715 Boundaries.
  2. The frontier rectifications proposed by the Czechoslovak Delegation at the meetings of the Deputies for Austria at London are described in telegram 627, Delsec 1155, January 29, 1947, from London, p. 116.
  3. The protocol on the Czechoslovak-Austrian negotiations, dated March 14, 1947, was transmitted to the Department of State as an enclosure to despatch 2765, March 18, 1947, from Vienna, not printed (760F.6315/3–1847).
  4. Telegram 157, February 23, 1949, from Vienna, not printed, reported as follows on the failure of the negotiations to be resumed:

    “No further developments on Czech-Austrian frontier changes have occurred since bilateral negotiations broke down in spring 1947. Negotiators signed March 14, 1947, outlining respective positions on six points raised in Czech memorandum of January, 1947 to Deputies. While protocol registered qualified Austrian agreement to several Czech proposals, Austrian opposition was adamant to request for cession territory south of Danube and between Danube and Morava desired for expansion Bratislava and for outlet Oder-Danube canal. According to Austrian Foreign Office, Czechs have not pursued matter since that time.” (760F.6315/2–2349)