The Secretary of State to the Embassy in Guatemala
99. Reference is made to FonMin’s assurances to you (urtel 119, March 61) as follows: “Guatemala limiting itself defensive steps with all precautions against creating further incidents”.
This information was conveyed confidentially to British Emb here. Latter has now informed Dept that on basis Muñoz Meany’s assurances to you British Govt has decided withdraw H.M.S. Sheffield. You should inform FonMin of above at earliest possible moment and in so doing emphasize the fervent hope this Govt that the Guatemalan Govt will refrain from any use of publicity regarding withdrawal for propaganda purposes. British Govt has similarly been requested to keep FonMin’s assurances to you as confidential.
You may explain to FonMin the continued interest of US in solution dispute in manner satisfactory to both parties and hope that withdrawal Sheffield will contribute to creation favorable atmosphere to that end. Propaganda publicity on either side would tend to destroy utility British gesture.
- Not printed.↩