308. Telegram From the Department of State to the Mission to the United Nations0

1777. Cyprus SC Meeting.

Dept hopes adjournment of meeting with your statement that further discussion be held “if and when” SC members deem it appropriate will make it possible avoid another session. We recognize this may depend on developments in Cyprus.
Following is guidance re US role in any further meetings:
UK, Greece and Turkey have treaty responsibilities. We look to UK to take lead to keep debate in constructive channels. Dept is in touch with British both in London and Washington to make this clear.
US should take back seat during debate but should discreetly seek keep discussion in moderate key, particularly when in chair.
We assume, however, it will be necessary for US to speak. Our statement should not discuss merits of Cypriot complaint against Turkey or of background issues which brought on recent communal violence, but should stress need for those concerned to work out their differences. In this connection we should call particular attention to existence of consultation machinery under Treaty of Guarantee to which all four parties are signatory. That Treaty calls on GOC to respect provisions of Cyprus Constitution and provides that, in event any breach of treaty, Govts of Greece, Turkey and UK shall consult with view to making representations or taking necessary steps to ensure observance of Treaty provisions. Treaty provides further that, should concerted action by three guaranteeing powers not be possible, “each of the three guaranteeing powers reserves the right to take action with the sole aim of reestablishing the state of affairs established by the present treaty.” In replying to Cypriot complaint, Turks may invoke this provision to justify their overflights Cyprus territory and ship movements.

Greek Cypriot strategy is abundantly clear. They want involve UN in Cyprus problem. As Rossides indicated at meeting last night, Greek Cypriots would like an SC Res calling on parties (i.e. Turkey) refrain from threat or use of force in Cyprus situation. Greek Cypriot leadership has for past year or so hinted they might refer their difficulties with Turk Cypriots and Cyprus Constitution to UN. Makarios has since independence 1960 assiduously cultivated Afro-Asian group with view [Page 601] in part to developing support for Greek Cypriot position on constitutional problem. In recent months Greek Cypriot leaders have been propounding doctrine that revision of Constitution is internal matter and that Treaty of Guarantee and provisions of London–Zurich Agreement infringe Cypriot sovereignty and right of self-determination. Rossides touched on these points in his statement last night.

Greek Cypriots thus far frustrated in their desire amend Constitution by Treaty of Guarantee and by London–Zurich Agreement. Basic provisions of Constitution taken from London–Zurich Agreement and can be changed only with consent all parties to those agreements. We feel Greek Cypriots hope to leap-frog treaties by involving UN in Cyprus question and by invoking right of self-determination and claiming infringement of sovereignty.

While USG has urged leaders both Cypriot communities sit down together in effort resolve their differences, and has in recent weeks been supporting a British effort to this end, we would not want do anything to abet Greek Cypriots in their efforts bypass treaties which made Cypriots a nation.

We believe it likely Soviets, and possibly Ghana, will support Greek Cypriots in SC. Communist party in Cyprus, which is essentially Greek Cypriot, has strongly supported Makarios in his efforts to amend Cyprus Constitution. Soviets might also see opportunity improve their position in Cyprus and sow discord between Greece and Turkey with implications for NATO solidarity.
We would hope SC by consensus and without formal resolution would take note of consultation machinery under Treaty of Guarantee and urge all parties employ this machinery in effort resolve Cyprus problem.
  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, POL 25 Cyp/UN. Confidential. Drafted by Moffitt; cleared by Talbot, NEA, and UNP; and approved by Cleveland. Repeated to Nicosia, Athens, Ankara, and London.