396.1 GE/4–2854: Telegram
Second Meeting of the Heads of the 16 Allied Delegations, Geneva, April 29, 11 a.m.: The United States Delegation to the Department of State 1
Secto 40. Repeated information Seoul 17, Tokyo 12, London 92, Paris 146, Moscow 26. Tokyo for CINCUNC. Department pass Defense. [Page 156] At meeting chief delegates of 16 today, Secretary emphasized primary issue is purpose and quality of supervised elections in Korea rather than territorial scope of elections. He also raised for consideration moving from plenary sessions into smaller group for more informal negotiations or adopting restricted sessions.
After long discussion both subjects, Ministers agreed set up working committee of ROK, US, UK, Australia, Colombia, France, Philippines, Thailand, Turkey to formulate unification plan present either in smaller group or restricted session or during plenary session after completion general debate. First meeting working group morning April 30.
No final disposition re composition or nature restricted sessions or smaller group. General consensus general debate would end Saturday3 for lack of speakers and restricted session could probably take place immediately after plenary session. Only Philippines and Thailand expressed intention participate general debate.
In discussing issue supervised elections in North Korea, Secretary pointed out ROK already subject to test and Communists would probably not accept. He hoped statements would be avoided imply ROK on par North Korean regime since such statements would undermine prestige and authority ROK which we should seek maintain. He said geographical scope elections not really decisive issue as are purposes and auspices such elections.
Regarding restricted or smaller meetings, Secretary suggested sign of weakness move this way too soon because Communists might assume we over-eager. We should be ready make such move when right time comes in order develop any possibility re negotiation. Secretary described bargaining possibilities in particular role which Communists accuse us wanting to play in using Korean bases for attack on China.
Eden several times pressed for termination general debate and presentation an agreed final position within next few days or 48 hours possibly followed by smaller meetings or restricted sessions to get down to business soon. He agreed with Secretary Communists would not accept principle supervised elections and thought this issue should be drawn clearly and soon on basis public position similar to tripartite position on German unification which public can understand. Other Commonwealth representatives supported Eden’s viewpoint that something must be done immediately counter Communist plans and our basic and final terms should be tabled quickly so that positive issue presented to Communists on which conference can break if they reject it as expected.[Page 157]
Secretary several times cautioned Ministers ROK cannot be rushed into deciding on position which is matter life and death for it and when every phrase is vital concern to very existence ROK. Secretary stressed need for time for Pyun consult Rhee and ROK Cabinet.
Pyun accepted proposal working committee with ROK participation, agreed to transmit any tentative plan to Seoul for action ROK Government and reserved its position re plan. Pyun questioned need for haste and cautioned against making concessions to Communists for nothing in return.
Pyun explained to meeting he strongly feels appropriate for ROK rebut allegations of North Korean, Chinese Communist and USSR delegates. Other Ministers acknowledged necessity answer false charges, and Pyun will make such statement Saturday although several Ministers feared might start series of countercharges.
- A set of minutes of this meeting (AD Verb Min/2) from which the time of the meeting is taken is in FE files, lot 60 D 330, box 14824. The meeting, at which Dulles presided, adjourned at 12:35 p.m.↩
- The file copy of this telegram is incorrectly datelined Apr. 28. It was received in the Department of State at 10:15 p.m. on Apr. 29. There was no meeting of the 16 on Apr. 28.↩
- May 1.↩