216. Telegram From the Department of State to the Mission to the United Nations1

374. Confirming Sisco/Yost telecon,2 you requested take up Congo problem immediately with SYG or Bunche, making following points:

1)We informing UNNY on strictly confidential basis Nigerians have agreed to Kasavubu’s request to provide troops by offering one battalion on condition that such action have UN or OAU blessing.

2)We consider immediate follow-through of critical importance in saving Congo from anarchy. Continued deterioration in security situation with further rebel gains and consequent disintegration of morale throughout country could lead to fragmentation of Congo within matter of weeks if immediate and drastic remedial action not taken.

3)As SYG stated in his terminal report June 29, 1964,3 SC reses re Congo continue be applicable since they have no terminal date. In addition, in same report, he noted that developments in Congo will continue to be of very great concern to UN and to him.

4)Several reses pertinent in this regard. You should draw on Deptel 33644 as supporting evidence, emphasizing particularly obligation of SYG to employ resources he has available (a) to seek maintain Congolese territorial integrity and political independence; (b) to help GOC in restoration and maintenance of law and order; and (c) to seek prevent civil war in Congo. In addition, member states have obligation under Res S/50025 to lend their support to GOC in conformity with Charter and UN decisions.

5) SYG will readily recognize that military input of responsible African state will also be constructive adjunct to UN efforts through its civilian operations in restoring Congo to stability.

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6)Under circumstances, we consider minimum action which SYG can take is to issue public statement welcoming Nigerian offer and indicating he finds it fully consistent with UN resolutions.

7)We appreciate that SYG will want direct request from Nigerians before issuing such statement, and once you have established his willingness cooperate this fashion, we will ask Embassy Lagos suggest GON pursue matter through its UN Rep.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL 23–9 THE CONGO. Secret; Priority. Drafted by Buffum, cleared by Harriman and Tasca, and approved by Sisco. Repeated to Lagos, Leopoldville, Brussels, Addis Ababa, Khartoum, and Tunis.
  2. Not further identified.
  3. The text of the U.N. Secretary-General’s report of June 29, 1964 (U.N. Doc. S/5784), is printed in American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1964, pp. 750–759.
  4. Telegram 3364 to USUN, June 22, contained the Department’s analysis of continuing responsibilities of the U.N. Secretary-General, U.N. members, and non-members under existing U.N. resolutions on the Congo. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL 23–9 THE CONGO)
  5. The text of U.N. Security Council Resolution 5002, November 24, 1961 (U.N. Doc. S/5002), is printed in American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1961, pp. 851–853.