The Secretary of State to the Embassy in Italy 1
213. Burrows,2 Counselor Brit Emb Wash presented note Dept Jan 183 suggesting joint démarche US and UK Govts to Ital and Yugo Govts suggesting desirability those Govts working out settlement Trieste issue near future. Brit Embs Rome and Belgrade have substance subj note in FonOff saving tel to Wash no. 131 Jan 104 and will make available you. Ur views Brit proposal requested to assist Dept formulate reply.
FYI fol observations made to Burrows at time receipt note:
- Suggested approach more formal and involved us more directly in prospective negots than considered advisable;
- We incline toward informal approach Itals only by US Amb5 and to Yugos probably only by Brit Amb, bringing to attn each Govt expressed interest of other Govt in reaching settlement;
- We believe Itals shld be approached first and Yugos subsequently rather than both simultaneously;
- Note misleading in implications in Para 5 that Itals have already reacted to concrete suggestions from us.
We have doubts re possibility Trieste compromise settlement now and are curious as to reasons for apparent Yugo desire reach settlement which in our opinion cld only represent internally unpalatable retreat from position maintained since war by Tito. May suggest that Brit and Yugos have gone into this problem farther than we are aware. Yugo attitude reported final Para Rome’s desp no. 18 Jan 96 may also be contributing factor. Refdesp gives Ital account current Italo-Yugo negots on outstanding Peace Treaty questions in which Yugos take attitude that they are US protégés, that West powers flirting with Tito Govt and Yugos therefore in better position obtain concessions from Itals. Rome’s and Belgrade’s comments specifically requested on these points.