331. Editorial Note

Herbert Hoover, Jr., Consultant to the Secretary of State on the Anglo-Iranian oil dispute, who was appointed on October 14, 1953, visited Iran from October 17 to November 4 to ascertain Iranian views on resuming diplomatic relations with the United Kingdom and finding a solution to the Anglo-Iranian oil controversy. On November 1, Iranian Foreign Minister Entezam told Hoover that a solution to the oil dispute would have to precede any resumption of diplomatic relations between Iran and the United Kingdom. To resolve the oil dispute Entezam suggested creation of an international consortium that would purchase oil directly from the National Iranian Oil Company. Though the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company could participate, it would not exert majority control over the consortium. Regarding compensation, the other companies in the consortium would “compensate” the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company. The proposal delivered by Entezam was transmitted to the Department of State in telegram 1022, November 2. For [Page 786] text, see Foreign Relations, 1952–1954, volume X, Iran, 1951–1954, pages 819–821 (Document 378).

Hoover then traveled to London where, with Ambassador Aldrich, he discussed the Iranian proposal with the British Government. Foreign Secretary Eden responded that any negotiation over the oil dispute must be preceded by the resumption of diplomatic relations between Iran and the United Kingdom. In view of the difficult internal political situation in Iran, however, the British Government agreed to issue a joint communiqué with the Iranian Government, in which the resumption of diplomatic relations was coupled with the stated desire to achieve a solution to the oil dispute as soon as possible. That solution would “take account of the national aspirations of the Persian people regarding the natural resources of their country and which, on the basis of justice and equity, will safeguard the honour and interest of both parties.” For the text of the joint communiqué transmitted in telegram 2228 from London, November 24, and subsequently issued on December 5, see ibid., pages 843–844 (Document 391).

For extensive documentation on Herbert Hoover, Jr.’s efforts to conclude an oil settlement in Iran, see ibid., pages 814–1044 (Documents 376488).