48. Telegram From the Department of State to All African Diplomatic and Consular Posts1

55581. Subj: African Contacts with South Africa.

In view of current movement and direction relating to black African contacts with South Africa, it is important that all posts have [Page 131] clearly in mind in conversation with Africans position of US with respect such contacts.
US has consistently taken position that improved atmosphere between South Africa and black Africa is desirable from standpoint stability and peace of continent. It welcomes moves in this direction as indicated by its recognition of the Lusaka Manifesto issued by the OAU countries in 1969.2 US however endorses no particular initiatives, believing that African nations themselves must judge conditions under which such improvement is possible as well as form and timing of contacts.
Recent discussion of “communications” with South Africa by US was solely in defining context US relationship to South Africa and should not be construed as endorsing any specific moves by African nations themselves.


  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, POL 1 S AFR–US. Confidential. Drafted by Newsom on March 31, cleared by Eliot, and approved by Rogers. A handwritten note reads: “Inform Consuls.”
  2. See Document 9.