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

2686. In further consideration Article 35 in restricted session Ambassadorial conference today May 10, Soviets remained in firm opposition to any changes in Article 35.2 British Chairman pointed [Page 99] out in introductory summation of previous day’s discussion that British and US considered new paragraph 13 to Article 35 contained in latest French proposal (Embtel No 26653) must be understood to supersede the “no foreign ownership” clause in the Moscow agreement. He also restated US and UK readiness to accept Austrian desire that recovered oil fields not be restored to foreign ownership.

US Ambassador noted that in course of many compromises offered Soviets, three important Western concessions had been advanced:

Willingness to preserve bilateral identity of Austro-Soviet agreement in treaty annex (recalled that US Delegation had gone even further with offer to omit annex provided satisfactory new Austro-Soviet bilateral containing essential points raised by Western representatives completed prior to Foreign Ministers’ meeting and that Article 35 make reference to it),
Insertion of no ownership clause covering German assets in all zones,
British and US agreement to prohibition against Austrians restoring oil fields to Western ownership.

US Ambassador stated that it was unimportant which of the compromise offers would be adopted so long as essential requirements of Western delegations met. In reply to US query as to attitude towards proposal for all-Austria “no German ownership” clause, Soviet Ambassador stated that this was another question upon which he reserved his right to state his opinion later.

When Soviet Ambassador remained unmoved, three Western Ambassadors stated that they would be forced to seek further instructions.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 396.1–VI/5–1055. Confidential; Niact. Repeated to Paris, London, Moscow, Bonn, and Rome.
  2. Regarding the discussion of Article 35 during the unrestricted part of the seventh meeting, see supra.
  3. Not printed, but see footnote 3, Document 58.