190. Telegram From the Embassy in Sweden to the Department of State 1

4734. Subject: Message from President Neto of Angola. Ref: Stockholm 4731.2

There follows the text of President Neto’s message as translated from the French and furnished to us in writing late August 31 by Pierre Schori of the Prime Minister’s staff:

Begin text

Message from President Neto.

Angola is very interested in having relations with the United States. They should be of the same character as relations with other countries, i.e. be normal and be built on respect for each other’s national independence.
Angola is no satellite to the Soviet Union. Angola has a cooperation with Cuba which is motivated by the state of war within the country. The Angolan Government is firmly resolved not to be subjected to foreign influence of any kind.
The Cuban presence has no aggressive intention; there are no ulterior motives. Angola needs the Cuban help, particularly in the areas of technical assistance and military training. The Angolan army must learn to use advanced weapons. The enemy has this knowledge and the border areas near Zaire and Zambia are still very sensitive. In the area of health the Cubans are making tremendous efforts to help. The language similarities make it possible to help quickly and effectively. When the Portuguese left Angola there were only 69 Angolan doctors.
Cuba’s presence is not directed against US interests. President Neto wants to give the US Government his guarantee that the Cuban presence is solely motivated by Angola’s wish to strengthen its national independence.
Angola has a great interest in becoming a member of the United Nations. Unnecessary delay will cause irritation among the Angolan people and within the MPLA.
There is a great future for the bilateral relations between Angola and the United States.

End text.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files. Secret; Priority; Exdis.
  2. In telegram 4731 from Stockholm, August 31, Ambassador Smith reported on his meeting with Schiori who read Neto’s message to the U.S. Government, promised to provide an English copy in writing, and asked Smith to pass the message to Washington. (Ibid.)