Memorandum of Conversation, by the Assistant Chief of the Office of South Asian Affairs (Weil)


Subject: Kashmir Dispute: SC Resolution

Participants: Mr. M. A. H. Ispahani, Ambassador of Pakistan
NEA—Mr. Hare1
SOA—Mr. Mathews2
Mr. Weil

Problem: The Kashmir dispute.

Action Required: To continue efforts, through the UN and through direct contacts with Pakistani and Indian representatives, to resolve the Kashmir controversy.

Action Assigned to: SOA

Mr. Ispahani called, at his request, at 12 noon. He opened his substantive remarks by citing a Persian proverb, the gist of which was that a person who has been bitten by a cobra is afraid of the sight of a rope. He said he was afraid that the current delay in discussion by the SC of the new resolution on Kashmir might represent an effort by India to gain time in the way it had done in February 1948. At that time, he said, Gopalaswami Ayyangar3 had requested two weeks for consultation, during which time the Indian Government had “turned on pressure” which had “changed the whole situation” in favor of the Indian case. Mr. Ispahani said he was very apprehensive lest Rau’s request for six or seven days delay constituted an effort on the part of the GOI to repeat its tactics of February 1948.

The Ambassador said India had extracted concession after concession until there was now “no more give” in Pakistan’s “bag”. He said he did not blame India for adopting its attitude because it had gained thereby and would continue to gain until the great powers and the SC said: “This is the limit”. He said his Government had asked him to reiterate this point as strongly as possible.

Mr. Ispahani remarked that the UNCIP had referred the case to the SC because of its inability to carry out provisions relating to demilitarization of the Northern areas. He observed that General McNaughton in sub-paragraph A of paragraph 2 had made specific mention of forces to be withdrawn, and under sub-paragraph B of paragraph 2 had made specific provision for dealing with the Northern [Page 1393] areas. He went on to say that the draft resolution called on the two Governments to handle demilitarization on the basis of paragraph 2 of the McNaughton proposals and left the implementation to be worked out later.

The Ambassador said the Pakistan delegation had endorsed paragraph 2 as a whole; that sub-paragraphs A and B of paragraph 2 were essentially a part of the principles of the paragraph; and that in the opinion of the GOP the clear intent of the SC resolution was to carry out this part of the McNaughton proposals. He went on to say that in its talks with the US delegation the Pakistan delegation had gained the impression that the US wished to leave the question of implementation in a vague form. He said that if this were the case the SC resolution would merely replace the UNCIP with a mediator and a resolution of this type would be “worse than useless”. Mr. Ispahani said he had been instructed to say his Government could not acept a resolution of this sort, which would merely intensify and prolong the deadlock. He said his Government felt the SC should make clear to the two parties the exact meaning of the resolution.

The Ambassador said his Government was ready and willing to accept the SC resolution but the paragraph of the McNaughton proposals referred to in the resolution “must stand as a whole or fall”.

Mr. Hare told Mr. Ispahani he need have no fear regarding the Department’s desire to give every consideration to these points. Mr. Mathews observed that the Department had foreseen there would be some delay in the submission of the resolution to the SC regardless of the Indians’ intentions because the Indian delegation had to obtain instructions from the Indian Foreign Minister at Delhi whereas the Foreign Minister of Pakistan was in New York.

Mr. Hare remarked that the Department could not act as a spokesman for the SC. Mr. Ispahani said that nevertheless Mr. Hare knew that the US stand went a long way in influencing the SC. Mr. Hare said that obviously the Department wanted things made as clear as possible to other members of the Council. Mr. Mathews, referring to the SC meeting to be held the following day, said the schedule was such that we would see where we stood after the parties had made their comments.4 Mr. Hare said he wanted to assure Mr. Ispahani that the Department took his remarks seriously and would give them full consideration.

[Page 1394]

[Here follows a reiteration by the Ambassador of his views on paragraph 2 of the McNaughton proposal and a brief exchange of closing remarks with Hare.]

T. E. Weil
  1. Raymond A. Hare, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern, South Asian, and African Affairs.
  2. Elbert G. Mathews, Director, Office of South Asian Affairs.
  3. N. Gopalaswami Ayyangar, Indian Minister of Railways and Transport, 1948–1952.
  4. The draft resolution was further discussed in the 469th meeting of the Security Council on March 8, on which occasion statements were made by Zafrulla Khan and the Indian Representative, Sir Benegal N. Rau. In the 470th meeting on March 14, Zafrulla Khan and Rau submitted their governments’ acceptance of the draft resolution subject to their own clarifying statements, and the resolution was then adopted by a Council vote of eight in favor and two abstentions. The verbatim minutes of the two meetings are in the Security Council Official Records, Fifth Year, Nos. 11 and 12.