356. Telegram From the Department of State to the U.S. Interests Section in Cairo1

231328. Subject: Middle East. For Ambassador Eilts from the Secretary.

1. We and the Soviets have now agreed to present to the GOE on Tuesday, November 27, the text of the joint letter which follows in paragraph 4, below.

[Page 978]

2. Delivery by the U.S. and USSR should be done separately, but within one hour of each other; you should coordinate with Ambassador Vinogradov in advance to assure that this is accomplished. In presenting letter to the GOE you should ask for approval by the Egyptians as rapidly as possible.

3. You will note that the joint letter has been modified slightly; thus, the draft sent you earlier is no longer operative.2

4. Text of letter follows:

Dear Mr. Secretary General:

On October 22, 1973, the Security Council adopted Resolution 338, jointly sponsored by the United States and the Soviet Union, which called upon the parties concerned to start negotiations under appropriate auspices aimed at establishing a just and durable peace in the Middle East. The United States and the Soviet Union have now been informed by the parties concerned of their readiness to enter the negotiations mentioned above under the auspices of the USA and the USSR.

It is our understanding that Egypt, Israel, Jordan and Syria have agreed to participate from the outset in the conference, which could begin in Geneva on December 17 or 18 without prejudice to possible additional participants at a subsequent phase. The parties have also agreed that the conference should be under the co-chairmanship of the United States and the Soviet Union.

It is our hope that you will find it possible to participate in the opening phase of the conference at which it is expected the governments concerned will be represented by their respective Foreign Ministers and later by their specially appointed representatives with Ambassadorial rank. We also hope you can make available a representative who would keep you fully informed as the conference proceeds. Finally, we would also appreciate it if the United Nations could make appropriate arrangements for the necessary conference facilities.

We request that you circulate this letter to the members of the Security Council for their information. We believe it would be appropriate for the President of the Security Council to consult informally the membership with a view to securing a favorable consensus of the Council. End text.3

[Page 979]

5. FYI. We also intend to present draft to GOJ and GOI on November 27.4 USSR will give draft to GOS on same date. End FYI.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 639, Country Files, Middle East, Arab Republic of Egypt, Vol. X, Nov. 73–Dec. 31, 1973. Secret; Immediate; Nodis; Cherokee. Drafted by Eagleburger, cleared by Pickering, and approved by Kissinger.
  2. See Document 352 and footnote 3 thereto.
  3. In telegram 3647 from Cairo, November 26, Eilts warned that there would be real difficulty in delivering the draft letter to a knowledgeable Egyptian official on November 27 since Sadat, Ismail, Fahmi, and other ranking officials were in Algiers. He added that Vinogradov had also informed his government that there was no one presently in Cairo to whom the letter could be delivered. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 639, Country Files, Middle East, Arab Republic of Egypt, Vol. X, Nov. 73–Dec. 31, 1973) Kissinger and Dobrynin confirmed in a telephone conversation, November 27, 4:55 p.m., that the letter was delivered to Fawzi. (Ibid., Kissinger Telephone Conversations, Transcripts (Telcons), Chronological File, Box 24)
  4. Telegram 231329 to Amman, November 24, instructed Brown to deliver the draft to the Government of Jordan. (Ibid., NSC Files, Box 618, Country Files, Middle East, Jordan, X, November–December 1973)