Conference files, lot 59 D 95, CF 158
Communiqué of the Meetings of the Foreign Ministers of the United States, the United Kingdom, and France 1
The Foreign Minister of France, M. Georges Bidault, the Acting Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom, the Marquess of Salisbury, and the Secretary of State of the United States, Mr. John Foster Dulles, met and consulted together at Washington from July 10 to 14, 1953.
In the course of their consultations, they reviewed a wide range of common problems of concern to the three Governments. The topics considered have been diverse, but the entire conference has been inspired by one dominant purpose. That has been to seek solutions fulfilling the common hope of their governments and peoples for peace, freedom, and justice. They are certain that these same aspirations are shared by peoples everywhere.
The three Ministers are convinced that solid foundations for peace can be built only by constructive action to end oppression and remove causes of instability and sources of conflict. These who genuinely want peace must seek to restore liberty, hope, and human dignity. In their meetings, the Ministers have sought answers to existing problems consistent with these principles.
This has been the spirit leading to their conclusions on the future of Europe, the restoration of German unity and of Austrian independence, and the establishment of peace in Korea and Indochina. The same spirit inspires their desire to see true liberty restored in the countries of Eastern Europe. In each case, they have sought means offering the greatest hope of satisfying the general desire for freedom, security, and well-being. They believe that their proposed solutions will help to achieve that stability based on consent which alone can reduce tension and guarantee a durable peace.
It is the earnest hope of the three Ministers that the Soviet Union will approach outstanding problems in the same spirit. In so doing the Soviet Union would contribute to a lasting peace assuring the security of all.
The three Foreign Ministers have reaffirmed their resolve to pursue vigorously the policies upon which their Governments have agreed within the framework of the Atlantic Treaty. These policies include [Page 1704] the work for European unity of the six European countries which have already set up the Coal and Steel Community and whose Governments have signed the treaty for the European Defense Community.
The three Governments are determined to safeguard, in accordance with the North Atlantic Treaty, the freedom, the common heritage and the civilization of their peoples, based on the principles of democracy, freedom of the individual and the rule of law. They have emphasized their resolve to continue the common defense effort necessary to redress the present lack of balance of power and thus to contribute to collective security and to the maintenance of international peace. The Ministers reaffirmed that the North Atlantic Alliance is fundamental to the foreign and defense policies of the three Governments. They were agreed that the improved prospects of peace were largely due to the existence of the alliance and that its defensive strength must be maintained. They wish to pay tribute to the vital work of the North Atlantic Council.
The three Ministers are instructing their Governments’ Permanent Representatives to the North Atlantic Council concerning the discussions they have held in order that the other member nations of NATO may be informed in accordance with established practice.
Convinced that no effort should be spared to strengthen European unity within the Atlantic Community, the three Ministers have noted that the Coal and Steel Community, the result of a French initiative, is now operating successfully. The establishment of the European Defense Community constitutes a necessary step to the same goal; meanwhile the work of creating a European Political Community is being pursued by the six Governments. They have noted the steps already taken or contemplated by the British Government to establish close links with these communities.
The three Ministers were therefore agreed that:
- the above institutions of a European Community will strengthen the Atlantic Community and will in turn be strengthened by association with it;
- those constructive efforts to build a stable, secure European Community are a major contribution toward world peace. Since the European Community corresponds to the lasting needs of its members and their people for peace, security and welfare, it is to be looked upon as necessary in itself and not linked up with existing international tensions.
- such a Community, peaceful by its very nature, is not directed against anyone. The interests and security of all countries cannot be better safeguarded than by the removal of causes of conflict in Europe. Indeed, the provisions laid down in the European Defense Community Treaty are a guarantee that its forces would never be used in the service of aggression.
- designed to put an end to the conflicts of the past, the European Community does not exclude any State; on the contrary, the six member-countries have repeatedly stressed that other free countries of Europe may become members of the Community or be associated with it.
The three Ministers have also given further consideration to the problem of the reunification of Germany. The grave events which took place recently in Berlin and in the Soviet Zone once again gave proof of the will to independence and the indomitable determination for freedom of the inhabitants of these areas.
These developments have confirmed the view of the Ministers, that the early reunification of Germany, in accordance with the legitimate aspirations of the German population, would be a great contribution to the easing of international tension.
The three powers have made sustained efforts to reach this goal. They have, in the course of recent years addressed several notes with constructive proposals to the USSR, the last dated September 23, 1952 to which no reply has yet been received. These notes responded to the overwhelming desire of the German people to see unity re-established in freedom, as reflected most recently by the Resolution of the German Bundestag of June 10 of this year.
An early and orderly progress in this direction requires the cooperation of the Soviet Government.
Mindful of the special urgency which recent events have given to the question of the unification of Germany, the three powers have resolved to make a new effort to bring to an end the division of Germany.
The three Governments have therefore decided, in consultation with the German Federal Government, to propose a meeting in the early autumn of the Foreign Ministers of France, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the USSR to discuss directly the first steps which should lead to a satisfactory solution of the German problem, namely, the organization of free elections and the establishment of a free all-German government.
This meeting should also consider the conclusion of the Austrian Treaty.
The three Ministers reviewed the situation in the Far East.
In reviewing the Korean situation the three Ministers reaffirmed their admiration for the gallantry of the United Nations forces, including the indomitable forces of the Republic of Korea, defending [Page 1706] the free world’s cause. They reaffirmed their strong support of the efforts of the United Nations Command to conclude an early armistice consistent with the United Nations’ aims and the determination of their governments to continue to work toward that end. They agreed to pursue every effort to assist the stouthearted and sorely tried Koreans to reunite peacefully under institutions of their own choosing.
They considered that, in existing circumstances and pending further consultation, the common policies of the three Powers towards Communist China should be maintained. They resolved that, if the Communists should renew their aggression in Korea after an armistice and again threaten the principles defended by the United Nations, their governments would as members of the United Nations again support the restoration of peace and security.
The Foreign Ministers were of the opinion that an armistice in Korea must not result in jeopardizing the restoration or the safeguarding of peace in any other part of Asia. They hope that any armistice accepted by the United Nations would be a step forward in the cause of peace everywhere, and in particular in the Far East.
The current situation in Indochina was examined. The three Foreign Ministers paid tribute once again to the heroic efforts and sacrifices of the soldiers of the French Union, be they from France, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos or other parts of the Union. They agreed that the struggle in defense of the independence of these three nations against aggressive Communism is essential to the Free World, and they exchanged views on various measures to hasten a satisfactory outcome and the restoration of peace in Indochina.
The Foreign Ministers of the United Kingdom and the United States noted with great satisfaction the proposal of the French Government to open discussions with each of the Governments of Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam with a view toward completing their sovereignty and independence. They agreed that this initiative was a most important and auspicious step toward perfecting a free association of these four nations, since the internal security and stability of the Associated States are best safeguarded by freely established constitutional regimes.
They noted that the French Union offers a harmonious and flexible framework within which the mutual interest of the participants may be guaranteed and their individual interests reconciled. They are convinced that the objective of the French Government is to perfect with the Associated States that mutually desirable cohesion which is indispensable to the success of the common struggle for the independence of the three states and which is therefore of fundamental importance to the security of the whole of Southeast Asia.
- The source text was attached to ST MIN 5 (Draft), p. 1689, as Annex 3. It was approved by the Foreign Ministers at their fifth tripartite meeting on July 14; for the minutes of this meeting, see ST MIN 5 (Draft).↩
- A parenthetical note at this point in the source text states that this part of the communiqué was released at 4 p.m., July 14.↩