493.46E9/6–2251: Telegram

The Ambassador in Ceylon (Satterthwaite) to the Secretary of State


649. I informed PriMin Senanayake today contents Deptel 459 June 2.1 He said he wld await with interest further advice from Ceylon Emb Wash.

I also took opportunity discuss general rubber situation and Kem amendment with particular ref Deptcirtel 814, June 19,2 PriMin gave rptd assurances his sympathy with anti-Commie efforts but said rather petulantly that Ceylon is now independent country and must not give impression that independence is sham by toeing anyone’s line. He stated he wld cooperate with anti-Commie efforts, but cld not make any commitment. He repeatedly affirmed it wld be polit impossible for him embargo rubber shipments to Commie destinations and expressed view that embargo to China unnecessary, because inability Commies arrange shipping and payment facilities. He referred somewhat scathingly to UK supplying rubber to Commie Europe.

I warned PriMin that such facilities undoubtedly would be eventually available and GOC must be prepared face issues squarely both with respect free world opinion and specific situation created by Kem amendment. I urge that in event GOC cld not certify under Kem amendment GOC shld prepare an adequate justification its position, but warned that latter wld be difficult.

Dept pass London sent Dept 649, rptd London 9.

  1. Telegram 459 to Colombo, June 21, stated that the Embassy might inform the Government of Ceylon that the United States was seriously considering the negotiation of a rubber contract with Ceylon. The Department of State would discuss the possibility of negotiations, probably on June 25, with the Ceylonese Ambassador to the United States, G. C. S. Corea. The Department might in addition suggest contracts for the purchase of other commodities important to the current mobilization program. (846E.2395/6–2151) The first discussion in Washington with Ambassador Corea was held on July 2; see telegram 1 to Colombo, July 2, infra.
  2. In circular telegram 814, June 19, the Department of State indicated that the 90-day interim general exceptions under the Kem Amendment did not constitute a suspension of the amendment for 90 days but were necessitated by the initial impossibility of complying with the schedule specified in the amendment. Individual country exceptions, wherever justified in the interest of U.S. security, would be completed within 90 days, in accordance with the provision that all exceptions be reviewed at least quarterly. (400.009/6–1951)