311. Editorial Note

The London Conference on Cyprus opened on February 17. Zorlu and Averoff represented Greece and Turkey and Archbishop Makarios and Dr. Fazil Kuchuk represented the major ethnic communities on the island. At the opening session of the conference, Foreign Secretary Lloyd announced that his government accepted the proposed Cyprus agreement subject to the retention of two military bases on the island under British sovereignty. Later that evening, an airplane carrying Prime Minister Menderes and his staff to the meeting crashed as it was landing at Gatwick Airport. Menderes and 14 other Turkish officials survived the crash, but the Prime Minister was unable to attend the conference.

On February 18, Archbishop Makarios suddenly announced that he could not support the proposed accords. Berger reported on efforts of the Greek Government to gain Makarios’ support for the Zurich accords in telegram 1881 from Athens, February 18. (Department of State, Central Files, 747C.00/2–1859) Eventually, the Greek Government succeeded in gaining Makarios’ assent to the accords and the agreed texts of the Cyprus accords were initialed by Zorlu, Averoff, and Lloyd on the morning of February 19.

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The agreements on Cyprus consisted of four documents: an agreement establishing the structure of the Republic of Cyprus; a treaty of guarantees among the Republic of Cyprus, Greece, Turkey, and the United Kingdom; a treaty of alliance among Greece, Turkey, and the Republic of Cyprus; and a February 17 declaration by the Government of the United Kingdom of its intention to grant independence to Cyprus. For texts, see American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1959, pages 765–775. Macmillan’s account of the negotiations is in Riding the Storm, pages 692–699.