290. Telegram From the Embassy in Greece to the Department of State0

1212. 1. Had opportunity for short conversation with Foreign Minister before he departed New York today. Averoff renewed his plea for support by US of guaranteed independence arguing that it represents middle position between enosis and partition, is something that US can support as consistent with its overall policy, and will eventually help British with Turks as UK can argue it cannot hold out indefinitely for partition if consensus in UN favors independence. If we cannot actively support, Foreign Minister asked again for completely neutral position so that it can present case without American opposition, public or private.

2. Obviously encouraged by political discussions at Bonn1 including Chancellor’s attitude, Averoff said he planned to adopt moderate approach in UN unless forced by Zorlu to reply sharply. If even some sort of vague formula for guaranteed independence emerged from UNGA debate, GOG anticipates renewed discussions in NATO at December meeting of Ministers.2 This cannot be said publicly now but it represents GOG attitude if it can emerge from UNGA discussions with [Page 744] some progress toward guaranteed independence even if date for independence were not fixed.3

3. Averoff said both Makarios and GOG will push hard for guaranteed independence resolution from UNGA although it is recognized in Athens that UN solution is not likely. Although he did not say so specifically, I have strong impression that Greeks will advocate principle of independence, perhaps without asking date be fixed, on general theory that Cyprus as part of Europe is developed to point where independence is justified in view of liberation of less developed areas. If they are accused that this is just a cover for enosis, they will invite UN to stipulate guarantees which would preserve independence and accept them. In brief, Greeks plan to convert issue into one where vote will be for or against independence with guarantees laid down by UN. As GOG now has Archbishop publicly on record for guaranteed independence, it can safely proceed along this line and it obviously expects to obtain support. As Macmillan has proclaimed his plan does not prejudice final solution and as we have publicly maintained neutral position, Greeks will certainly argue we should not oppose their position. It would be helpful for me to know our attitude as soon as possible to guide me in discussions here.4

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 747C.00/11–1558. Secret. Repeated to London, Paris for USRO, Ankara, Nicosia, and USUN.
  2. See footnote 1, Document 287.
  3. Scheduled for December 16–18 in Paris.
  4. In telegram 1213 from Athens, November 15, Riddleberger reported: “Averoff asked me to give his personal assurance, not yet cleared with GOG, that if guaranteed independence idea is approved in principle by UNGA, even though in form of vague resolution without date of independence being fixed, recommendation will be made to Cypriots to stop violence on ground that eventual liberation from colonial rule is certain. He asked this be kept strictly secret for time being but was certain it could be done if progress is made in UN. He said if such declaration were made it would without doubt have great effect on island and would certainly aid in pacification. Department may desire inform Lodge of this possibility.” (Department of State, Central Files, 747C.00/11–1558)
  5. No reply has been found.