394.31/9–651: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom


1373. Urtel 1248 Sep 6.

1. Agree need for full consultation other Dels Geneva before official discussion at GATT plenary session; however wld hope such consultation not take full two weeks. Thorp1 can stay only two weeks and FonOff will appreciate desirability settlement before he leaves.

2. Answers Depcirtel 199 tentatively show approx 14 favorable votes (including UK) for US action. Melander states Nor will definitely support and implies support Denmark and Swed as well. Is optimistic re success and implies that as chmn he will do best get proposal through. List of 14 excludes possible additional favorable votes of Australia, New Zealand, Sou Afr, Fr, Neth, Belg, Lux, Ital, Sou Rhodesia. Since 16 votes needed, only necessary obtain 2 votes immediately foregoing list. Dept will probably approach Fr, Ital, Neth at highest level this purpose and wld appreciate similar approach by [Page 1400] Brit. Fr vote obviously critical. Australia, New Zealand unsure but impression is they will eventually vote our favor. Obviously, impossible obtain Commonwealth support without UK vote. Consider Burma, Ceylon, Finland, India, Indonesia, probably will abstain, most unlikely vote for.

3. US position not inflexible re details text reso. However, US discussions other countries, esp. smaller countries W Eur indicate that proposal for gen waiver, implying similar action by all or several CP’s wld meet much greater resistance than bilateral waiver. Our estimate is that if we put forward gen waiver we might lose at least 9 potential votes (Belg, Can, Denmark, Fr, Ital, Lux, Neth, Nor, Swed). Nevertheless, bilat waiver of UK-Czech relations cld be considered if this is what UK wants.

  1. Assistant Secretary of State Thorp was to head the United States Delegation.