250. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in the Congo1

626. Ref: Addis 372 and 377; Leo’s 998.2

For Leo: You should see Kasavubu urgently and make clear to him that if he were to veto commission idea, as reported Addis 377,3 we could not support such action. Moreover, USG would have to review its Congo policy in light of situation created in rest of Africa.

You should use occasion to explain commission idea as envisioned para 5 Addis Ababa’s 372 (98 to Leo)4 emphasizing presence of such commission in Congo would be in cooperation with GOC. Such language we believe would give GOC sufficient control over unacceptable interference Congo internal affairs.

For Addis: You should inform GOC delegation US making above démarche Kasavubu and make every effort encourage Tshombe accept commission idea if does not go substantially further than your draft resolution.

You should also point out that in any event OAU will probably have adjourned before Kasavubu could consider and veto any specific language. If language of resolution is sufficiently flexible, therefore, you should assure GOC delegation that we will assist in subsequently justifying to Kasavubu its acceptance of resolution. We would do so by supporting an interpretation of resolution requiring that activities of commission recognize legitimacy of and be conducted in cooperation with GOC.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL 3 OAU. Confidential; Flash. Drafted by Schaufele; cleared by Brubeck, Lang, Fredericks, and O’Sullivan; and approved by Rusk. Also sent to Addis Ababa and repeated to Brussels.
  2. Telegram 372 from Addis Ababa, September 7; telegram 377 from Addis Ababa, September 8; and telegram 998 from Leopoldville, September 8. (All ibid.)
  3. Telegram 377 reported that it would be impossible for the Congolese delegation to accept the presence of any OAU commission in the Congo, since Kasavubu had given formal instructions against it. (Ibid.)
  4. Paragraph 5 of telegram 372 described a resolution drafted by Ambassador Korry that would establish two OAU commissions to help bring an end to frictions between the Congo and its neighbors, to make recommendations on ways OAU members could assist the Congolese people and government by material and other means to bring an end to the armed conflict, and to assist the Congo in achieving national reconciliation and in preparing for a general election. (Ibid.)