59. Telegram From the Delegation at the Vienna Ambassadorial Conference to the Department of State1

2644. After fruitless discussion Article 35 (reported separately2), restricted session continued with remaining outstanding articles. Soviet Ambassador in chair employed slanted presentation of questions and other strong-arm methods in effort obtain Austrian concessions. Result as follows:

Article 38: Soviet Ambassador stated all but Austrians have agreed retain original version paragraph 3. Despite denials by others, Figl states he would accept either US compromise version or original and finally agreed to original on basis desire speed conference.

Article 45, paragraph 2: Soviet Ambassador took stronger negative line than previously maintaining that no agreement with Yugoslavs would have any effect. Figl requested Article remain open pending conclusion negotiations with Yugoslavs and Article remains reserved.

Article 48: French weakened Western position by indicating would accept paragraph 1 if Austrians did, but Article remains reserved on basis British and US action.

Article 49: Soviet Ambassador hinted at his suspicions reasons others wish delete and insisted Article remain. Figl and Wallinger argued mildly that Article is out of date and numerous bilateral agreements already in effect. French Chargé expressed continued desire delete Article but stated would agree retain if Austrians did. Soviet Ambassador attempted claim Figl had withdrawn his suggestion which Figl initially denied, but said he would withdraw if no agreement reached. US Ambassador insisted on reserving Article for further study, pointing out its spirit is to impose on Austrians what is normally handled in bilateral agreements. Since Austria will be neutral it is important for us to remove any restrictions on its freedom of action. Moreover, some provisions are vague and might give rise to future misunderstandings. US Ambassador cited paragraph 1(D) on overflights as example. Soviet Ambassador rebutted by pointing out last sentence paragraph 8(D) and provision for reciprocity. Article reserved.

Annex VIII: While Soviets had previously reserved on this Annex without comment, they today stipulated Annex should be kept as is. Similar position taken on Annex IX. Both Annexes continue be reserved.

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Articles 42, 54, to [sic] and Annexes I and X remain reserved and no significant comment was made concerning them.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 396.1–VI/5–955. Confidential; Priority. Repeated to London, Paris, and Moscow.
  2. Supra.