750G.00/9–754: Telegram

No. 261
The Chargé in the United Kingdom (Butterworth) to the Department of State1
top secret

1186. Limit distribution. Pass Defense for Hensel and Lemnitzer. From Thompson. Harrison informs me that after discussing question with Kirkpatrick British do not intend request Velebit specifically return to Belgrade with message from Eden but hint at or sound him out on possibility. Because of other commitments appears [Page 523] likely only possible time for Eden see Velebit is Friday morning.2 If he agrees to Foreign Office plan he will inform Velebit that he believes negotiations have reached impasse and that Italians will not accept present proposal. He will state that we now have reason to believe that Italians would have accepted rockpile swap and ask Yugoslavs to consider carefully whether they could not in order save negotiations agree to this or something approaching it; have in mind the lesser concession Harrison and I had put forward paralleling line 50. British feel strongly must move quickly as situation could get out of hand any time by either Italian or Yugoslav public statements or press leaks (also convening of Italian Parliament and October 8 imminent). They believe Murphy trip would be helpful if it could be made not later than early next week. In our last discussion with Brosio he indicated some annoyance that Eden had not personally put his suggestion to Velebit and British believe it essential that they satisfy Italians by making high level approach particularly in view Italians informed by General Smith’s approach to Mates. They understand Velebit relations with Popovich poor but that he had considerable influence on Tito.

  1. Repeated for information to Belgrade, Rome, and Trieste.
  2. Sept. 10.