289. Telegram From the Embassy in Turkey to the Department of State0

1470. At present stage Cyprus issue, Embassy at loss suggest any better tactics for handling problem than that Britain continue implement UK plan and attempt restrict EOKA terrorists. As expressed by Nicosia (Nicosia telegram 245),1 Embassy also believes failure of British show [Page 742] determination continue carry out UK plan would incur grave risk of creating new “Palestine” situation on Cyprus, which would be more dangerous to US policies than present period of tension. Embassy may be suffering from “localitis”, but only constructive new measure seen possible would be for British find some means bring forcefully home to Makarios appreciation hardships of Greeks on Cyprus and their reportedly increasing desire for early settlement (Nicosia telegram 209).2

GOT has not yet revealed its views on how it plans handle forthcoming UNGA debates re Cyprus (Embtel 1447).3 Embassy believes Foreign Minister Zorlu would be satisfied with resolution worded along lines 11th UNGA resolution calling for conference of “interested parties”.4

As indicated by local press resuming practice headline government statements re Cyprus and arrival Kuchuk to Ankara (Embtel 1460),5GOT may be moving toward new build-up local excitement re Cyprus in preparation of UNGA debates. Embassy therefore supports Nicosia recommendation (Nicosia telegram 246)6 that Department have facts on voting record and texts US statements as well as text final resolution be sent interested posts by Priority if not Niact telegram.

Foreseeing that Greece will make major push at UNGA for concept “independence” (Athens telegram 1170),7 Embassy wishes restate that basic factor determining Turkish position is need for security of Anatolia with protection Turkish community on Cyprus being given second consideration. “Independence”, which provides only “paper” guarantees security Anatolia would not be acceptable GOT. GOT agreed support present UK plan because (1) it committed UK remain on island for at least seven years more, (2) through position of Turkish Government representative GOT obtained foothold on island and (3) HMG agreed to reiteration Lennox-Boyd statement December 19, 1956. Publicly GOT still firmly wedded to thesis “partition”; this thesis continues contain flexibility at least to extent not preventing GOT from agreeing support UK plan. Embassy unable envisage how Greek Government could embellish “independence” so that it would become harmonious with “partition” but was encouraged by Averoff’s reported approach to Turkish Embassy Athens with request that Turks [Page 743] re-examine concept of independence (Athens telegram 1170 paragraph 3). If possible Embassy feels USG should encourage more such direct Turkish-Greek talks.

Except for continued support of British efforts implement UK plan and for encouraging Greeks and Turks get together directly (Athens telegram 1170), Embassy feels it impossible map out next step in USG policy in UNGA until after Greeks-British-Turks expose their plans, possibly in UN debate.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 747C.00/11–1458. Secret. Repeated to Athens, London, Paris for USRO, Istanbul, Izmir, and Iskenderun.
  2. Telegram 245 from Nicosia, November 12, reported that the British authorities had put off application of stringent security measures on Cyprus in view of the lower-than-expected level of EOKA violence but that they would act with determination if EOKA escalated its violence. (Ibid., 747C.00/11–1258)
  3. Telegram 209 from Nicosia, October 14, reported that Makarios was searching for a compromise solution to the Cyprus issue. (Ibid., 747C.00/10–1458)
  4. Telegram 1447 from Ankara, November 12, reported that Zorlu had not been willing to discuss the Cyprus issue. (Ibid., 747C.00/11–1258)
  5. For text of this February 26, 1957, resolution, see U.N. doc. A/C. 1/L.172 (XI).
  6. Dated November 13. (Department of State, Central Files, 747C.00/11–1358)
  7. Dated November 12. (Ibid., 747C.00/11–1248)
  8. Document 287.