762.022/8–252: Telegram

No. 623
The Ambassador in France (Dunn) to the Department of State1


742. First day of Saar conversations, which will be resumed August 7, was entirely exploratory and did not involve actual negotiations. Hallstein left Paris last night for Switz to consult with Adenauer. Positions outlined by the two sides were understood to be initial negotiating positions. Most important differences were the fol:

Hallstein started out by raising question of admission new parties and postponement of Saar elections. Schuman said he wld prefer to discuss gen outlines of settlement first and leave question of elections for later stage of conversations.
Altho principle of Eur superstructure for an autonomous Saar was apparently accepted by both parties, Hallstein said it shld be understood that Saar wld not be “full independent” in sense of having members accorded to sit in internatl organizations as separate state. Schuman made no reply.
Schuman stressed French econ interest in Saar, not only re mines and railroads but also importance of maintenance Franco-Saar monetary and customs union. Hallstein said Saar Govt shld have control of mines and railroads, [but?] access to Saar shld be on “Eur” basis, without discrimination.
Hallstein spoke of importance of “gesture” by France through cession small slice French territory to a Europeanized Saar. Schuman pointed to great difficulties in view of need not only for parliamentary approval but also for plebiscite as required by constitution. Hallstein also brought up question of cession slice of Saar territory to Ger, but this not further discussed.
Hallstein voiced preference for placing Saar under Schuman Plan high authority. Schuman voiced preference for Council of Eur as authority responsible for Saar fon rels.

Above based on info given by De Beaumarchais to Brit Emb last night and on what Latournelle told me today. Comment of latter was that Ger position was initial one which offered room for considerable retreat and that it still too early to judge prospects for favorable outcome. He was unable to tell us whether there was any significance in fact that Schuman did not, apparently, turn down flatly the suggestion of cession French territory to Saar.2

  1. Repeated to London, Bonn, and Strasbourg.
  2. On Aug. 5 Donnelly reported that he had discussed the first session with Hallstein on that day and the previous one. Hallstein’s account was similar to that contained in this telegram. (762.022/8–552)