178. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom1

5342. Cyprus. Ref: Nicosia’s 1030 and 1013 to Dept; Deptel 5269 to London; Deptel 511 to Nicosia, pouched London.2 Dept officers discussed with British Embassy Counselor Trench Feb 24 apparent divergencies in US and UK attitude re Mediator’s plans and nature of his proposed report. Following points were made to Trench:

Turks have pressed us several times to agree that Plaza should not submit report with recommendations; we committed ourselves to Turks to discourage submission of report.
Greeks also hold view that report would not be useful at this time.
We understood as of our last talks with British on subject in December that they also opposed submission substantive report.
Now, however, Plaza seems determined to submit report with recommendations which apparently weighted heavily in favor Greek Cypriot views.
We deeply concerned since we feel Turk reaction to such report may be dangerous.
We note at same time that UK and US views appear to be diverging; we concerned over differing UK–US assessments of Plaza’s tactics and wish call to UK’s attention.
We feel that Plaza may be giving UK one idea and US another as to what report would look like.
We also feel that among elements in Plaza’s proposed solution, he is talking about demilitarization of island and not Republic; this appears to be one of matters which he may be making different noises about to UK and US.
We feel British should take measures to clarify Plaza’s views on report before he commits himself to Makarios and leaves Nicosia to return to New York.

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We queried Trench as to British attitude toward submission substantive report by mediator. Trench said he had little guidance on this but quoted from telegram on FonSec Stewart’s statement to Greek and Turk Ambassadors, and Bottomley’s statement to Cyprus HICOMer, on Feb 19 (Deptel 5269 to London) urging that parties exercise maximum restraint pending submission of mediator’s report next month. Stewart’s statement as read by Trench indicated British hope that Plaza report might contain new elements which could help toward settlement. Trench also stated that Cypriot HICOMer London had asked Bottomley whether British favored talks among parties. Bottomley had replied by letter to effect talks might be more meaningful after mediator’s report submitted. From this it seems clear British at least reconciled to, if not in agreement on, submission report with recommendations for solution.

Trench said he would report conversation to London and give us HMG reaction when received. We hope this reaction will throw light on British thinking re wisdom of public report by mediator.3

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, POL 27 CYP. Confidential. Drafted by King and Moffitt; cleared by GTI, BNA, IO, and UNP; and approved by Jernegan. Repeated to Nicosia, Athens, Ankara, and USUN.
  2. Telegram 1030, February 23, reported the views of Bishop and Plaza on the content of the U.N. Mediator’s report. (Ibid.) In telegram 1013, February 17, Belcher reported that Plaza’s views on the contents of his report had not changed. (Ibid.) In telegram 5269, the Department of State reported that the British Government had stressed the need for a constructive response to the Mediator’s report in talks with Greek and Turkish representatives. (Ibid.) Telegram 511, February 6, reported on Ball’s February 4 discussions with Plaza. (Ibid.) Plaza submitted his report to Secretary-General Thant on March 26; for extracts, see American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1965, pp. 505–510.
  3. In telegram 4203 from London, March 2, the Embassy reported that on the basis of discussions with the Foreign Office, Plaza still believed that Makarios was the key to a Cyprus solution and that the time had come for direct Greek Cypriot-Turkish Cypriot negotiations. (Ibid.)