357.AB/2–1852: Telegram

The United States Representative at the United Nations (Austin) to the Department of State1


543. From Gross. Re Kashmir. Have just seen No. 2851, Feb 12, from New Delhi re Kashmir and in particular Emb expression concern re implications my talk with Sheikh Abdullah (reported Delga 1309, Feb 6).

Dept aware that for over two years USUN has studied case with UN reps McNaughton,2 Dixon and Graham as well as with reps of both parties, including Zafrullah, Mohammed Ali and Ayub for Pak and Bajpai, Rau, Menon, Dayal and others for GOI.

I profoundly hope Emb New Delhi gives no indications to GOI or to Abdullah at this stage that any solution other than state-wide plebiscite following demilitarization is envisaged even as residual possibility. From beginning it has seemed of extreme importance to USUN (dealing with both sides and with impartial UN reps) that parties be firmly held to their agreement until and unless it is superseded by mutually acceptable alternative.

In his conversation with me in Paris, Abdullah was clearly shopping for bargains. I fear that quickest way really to destroy UN prestige in this case would be to weaken Graham’s authority by permitting doubts to arise now concerning our firm intention to throw our weight behind compliance with agreements already reached between parties. I believe it is premature to say that SC should accept Graham’s failure as “clear evidence futility seeking solution through demilitarization and all-Kashmir plebiscite”. After all, this solution represents agreement of parties rather than SC fiat. I cannot believe it is “taking sides” to ask parties to honor their commitments.

  1. This telegram was repeated by the Department to New Delhi and Karachi.
  2. Gen. A. G. L. McNaughton of Canada, President of the Security Council in December 1949, negotiated informally with Representatives of India and Pakistan. His final report to the Council, dated Feb. 3, 1950 (UN doc. S/1453), which included a plan for demilitarization, was accepted by Pakistan but rejected by India (UN docs. S/PV. 463–466, Feb. 7–10, 1950).