860H.5018/3–1047: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Embassy in Yugoslavia

restricted   urgent

125. Headline front-page New York Times article March 10 states Emb has endorsed UNRRA and Yugos Govt request allocation grain for purchase in US. While underlying article is not as categoric as headline would imply, Dept considered it advisable clarify situation as known to us on basis your recent tels and has accordingly made statement along following lines orally to press. At same time, Dept spokesman emphasized that allocation requested is for grain for purchase by Yugos or UNRRA and that no free grant nor extension of credit by US is involved.

“The State Department has not received any recommendation from the US Embassy in Belgrade that an allocation of grain be made to Yugoslavia. Several days ago representatives of the Yugoslav Government and of UNRRA approached the Embassy requesting such a [Page 779] recommendation with a view to their being able to purchase grain in the US. However, the Yugoslav Government has repeatedly and publicly stated that its supplies of food were adequate to meet essential needs until the next harvest and has shipped gram to Rumania (before the recent election1) and to Albania. Accordingly, Embassy officials indicated that they could not make such a recommendation without clear evidence that a real need now exists. They offered to consider and investigate carefully any data which the Yugoslav Government might present in this regard. If a recommendation for an allocation is received from the Embassy, it will, of course, have to be considered in the light of other urgent needs for available US grain exports.”

  1. Reference here is to the Rumanian national election in November 1946.