172. Telegram From the Embassy in Iran to the Department of State1

1128. Man who identified himself as Shamsuddin Mofti and his colleague as Masoud Barzani appeared at Emb today with letter of introduction from Mollah Mustafa Barzani and oral message from him. It was essentially a strong plea for direct US assistance. He said Iraqi Kurds need financial and military assistance, especially heavy weapons, and would be willing receive American officials in their area and wanted be regarded as “another state of the union.” He also said Barzani considers oil resources should be handled by an American firm in direct arrangement with the Iraqi Kurds.

We of course gave him no encouragement whatsoever. Mofti stated Barzani asked that his message be sent to Washington and that USG henceforth use Tehran as point of contact with Barzani. Baghdad, he said, had become too difficult for Barzani to use because of recent Iraqi Army movements. He also said Barzani would like to have direct [Page 348] channel of communication with US rather than through Iranians whom he did not trust to report his views accurately.

EmbOff pointed out steadfast US policy toward Iraqi-Kurdish dispute along lines CA-9411 of March 2, 1963.2 Said message would be transmitted to Washington, but said could give no commitment regarding a response nor place any response might be given. Nevertheless, Mofti said he would wait in Tehran. Mofti and Barzani said Iranian authorities are unaware of their presence here.3

Herz
  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1964-66, POL 23-9 IRAQ. Confidential. Repeated to Baghdad, Ankara, and Cairo.
  2. CA-9411 stated that the United States should continue to regard the Kurdish revolt as strictly an internal Iraqi matter in which there was no role for the United States either directly or indirectly. ( Foreign Relations, 1961-1963, vol. XVIII, Document 174)
  3. Telegram 938 to Tehran, April 14, instructed the Embassy to continue courteously to refuse to enter into a dialogue with “self-styled Barzani representatives,” emphasizing that the U.S. policy of non-involvement in the Iraq-Kurdish dispute was unchanged. It added that through appropriate channels, SAVAK should be informed promptly of the visit and of the reply given. (National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1964-66, POL 23-9 IRAQ)