264. Letter From Congolese President Kasavubu to President Johnson1

Mr. President:

The decision taken by the ad hoc Commission of the Organization of African Unity to send a delegation to Your Excellency in order to discuss the bilateral agreements between our two countries, signed in full sovereignty, constitutes such a flagrant violation of the Charter of the OAU that I take the liberty of sending you this message.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo, co-signatory to the Addis Ababa Charter, has subscribed to the following principles: (1) the sovereign equality of all Member States; (2) noninterference in the internal affairs of the States; (3) respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of each State and for its inalienable right to an independent existence.

The people and the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo will never consent to the Organization of African Unity discussing and calling into question any bilateral agreements that our two countries have the right to conclude and have concluded in full sovereignty.

We shall continue to cooperate with the Government and the people of the United States in the certainty that no political condition which would deprive us of independence is attached to the assistance we are receiving.

The re-establishment of order and peace is still our primary objective in the difficult situation now faced by our country. This task rests solely with the legal government headed by Prime Minister Moise Tshombe.

The first duty of the Commission is to hold a talk with this government and in the Congo. Its principal task is “to support and encourage the efforts that the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo is making to achieve national reconciliation; to seek every possible means of normalizing the relations between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and its neighbors, particularly Burundi and the Republic of the Congo (Brazzaville)”.

This is the message that I have thought is advisable to send you in the name of the people and the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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Accept, Mr. President, the renewed assurances of my very high consideration.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1964–66, POL THE CONGO–US. No classification marking. The original is attached to an October 1 transmittal memorandum from Read to Bundy which states that the letter was delivered to Williams by Congolese Chargé Mario Cardoso.
  2. Printed from a copy that indicates President Kasavubu initialed the original.