27. Telegram From the Embassy in Cyprus to the Department of State1
1015. During discussion this morning, Makarios reviewed recent political and military developments. Makarios thought that peak of crisis had passed, that worst difficulties were behind him and that, although further troubles could be expected, situation would improve from now on. Discussion of political and military situation revolved around three aspects:
- Creation and establishment of PKF in Cyprus: PKF was now settled. It would become clear during next two weeks whether it would be successful or not. PKF cooperation with GOC and nature of its terms of reference were essential to success.
- Mediator: Makarios said name of Sakari Severi Tuomioja had been suggested. Tuomioja was agreeable to GOC, Greece and Britain.2 He had not yet heard whether he was acceptable to Turkey. Makarios said he was “pessimistic mediation would soon result in political settlement.” It depended on whether Turkish Cypriots would be willing to return to their villages and not insist on some form of partition or federation. Success or failure of Mediator would begin to emerge within one month.
- Return of Greek and Turkish Cypriots to their homes and jobs: Some estimates were that there were now 6,000 displaced Greek Cypriots and 45,000 or 50,000 Turkish Cypriots and it was estimated former would increase to 20,000 and latter to 80,000 within next month or so. Makarios thought these estimates high, but nevertheless figures were substantial for Cyprus. It was important all Cypriots, especially Turkish Cypriots, have confidence in government and return to their homes and jobs. Makarios hoped those Turkish Cypriots who did not wish to do so might go to Turkey.
He said GOC would assist all Cypriots, including Turkish Cypriots, in various necessary ways to return to their homes and jobs. Cost of rebuilding homes would be formidable. Makarios hoped international financial assistance would be available. GOC had been losing one million pounds monthly in income during recent troubles and he hoped it would soon be possible resume development program.[Page 55]
I said attitude of GOC toward needy Cypriots, including Turkish Cypriots, was most statesmanlike and would indicate to world GOC was ready to take care of all of its people rather than only one segment.
I added I had been disappointed, following my return from US, to read articles in Greek Cypriot press indicating US activities were being curtailed and Greek Cypriots being let go for purpose of bringing economic pressure on GOC. This type of analysis was wholly inaccurate. I wished to assure him there had been no change in attitude of USG toward Cyprus and that we continued ready to help Cyprus with its economic development as we could within scope of our resources.
It had been necessary to suspend some programs such as Peace Corps and to curtail others such as technical assistance for time being because American staff could not function in many parts of Cyprus because of present difficulties and because Greek Cypriot press continued to foment anti-Americanism by charging that US was pro-Turkish. Fact of matter was US was not only friendly to Turkey, but also to Greece and to Britain and especially to Cyprus. I hoped Makarios would use his influence with press to explain true American attitude and thus bring stop to this unfriendly criticism which might have unsettling effect on friendly relations which had been built up between US and Cyprus over years.
Makarios said he understood true situation and realized US had always been friendly to Cyprus. Makarios ducked issue of Greek Cypriot press by saying American press (especially Christian Science Monitor) seemed to be unfriendly to Cyprus. I commented it was not exactly fair comparison. Greek Cypriot press might be expected to respond to suggestions from him more readily than American press would respond to suggestions from us.
- Source: Department of State, Central Files, POL 23–8 CYP. Confidential. Repeated to Ankara, Athens, London, Paris for USRO, and USUN. Passed to the White House, JCS, OSD, CIA, CINCEUR, and CINCSTRIKE.↩
- Secretary-General Thant announced Tuomioja’s appointment on March 25. For text of the statement, see U.N. Doc. S/5625 and Corr. 1.↩