396.1 BE/2–1554: Telegram

No. 483
The Secretary of State to the Department of State1

top secret

Dulte 75. Limit distribution. Reference Dulte’s 68 and 70.2 Slightly revised version French draft sponsored by UK delegation with participation of French delegation as to Indochina section, was considered by tripartite Foreign Ministers early this evening.3 British under cabinet instructions to seek version as unobjectionable to Soviets as possible, while standing firm on five-power issue. Eden prepared present it at restricted meeting tomorrow. Text follows with minor amendments adopted during meeting:

“The Foreign Ministers of the United States, France, the United Kingdom, the USSR, meeting in Berlin, (considering) that the establishment, by peaceful means, of a united and independent Korea would be an important factor in reducing international tension and in restoring peace in other parts of Asia, (propose) a conference of representatives of the United States, France, the United Kingdom, the USSR, the Chinese People’s Republic, the Republic of Korea, the People’s Democratic Republic of Korea and any of those countries that contributed forces to the United Nations command in Korea which may desire to participate, to meet in Geneva on April 15 for the purpose of reaching a peaceful settlement of the Korean question.

(Agree), further, that, if and when the discussions of the above-mentioned conference and the situation in Southeast Asia show that favorable prospects for peace exist, they will jointly agree on the conditions for calling another conference for the restoration of peace in Indochina, to which representatives of the United States, France, the United Kingdom, the USSR, the Chinese People’s Republic, and the appropriate states of Southeast Asia will be invited.

It is understood that neither the invitation to, nor the holding of, the above-mentioned conference on Korea shall be deemed to imply diplomatic recognition in any case where it has not already been accorded.”

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At the suggestion of Secretary it was agreed to hold this draft in reserve for use only if Soviet tactics should make its introduction by Eden or Bidault seem advisable.

Although this draft not as good for our purposes as our own, believe we can acquiesce in it if tactical situation seems to call for it, since our basic principle is not compromised.

Note Korean paragraph follows closely suggestion in Tedul 45.4 Indochina paragraph somewhat unfortunate in that no countries specifically named except five including Communist China. However, specific inclusion of “appropriate states of Southeast Asia” clearly maintains principle of no five-power conference. French strongly oppose specific mention Associated States because they think it would inevitably lead to Soviet demand for specific mention of Viet Minh, which is unacceptable.

  1. Drafted by McConaughy and repeated to London and Paris.
  2. See footnote 1, Document 476.
  3. McConaughy had met with Allen and Roux during the afternoon to discuss a new British draft for which the French had participated in preparing the paragraph on Indochina. The British draft mutatis mutandis was presented to the Foreign Ministers immediately following the seventeenth plenary (see Sectos 144 and 145, Documents 479 and 480) and they approved it with some minor amendments. McConaughy recorded these events in a memorandum, dated Feb. 14, not printed. (Conference files, lot 60 D 627, CF 204)
  4. Document 476.