86. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom1

212140. Subject: Message from the Secretary to Foreign Secretary Crosland.

Please deliver the following message from Secretary Kissinger to Foreign Secretary Crosland:
Quote. Dear Tony: I want to express to you our deep concern in the United States that South Africa might be suspended from membership in the IAEA or have its credentials denied at the forthcoming 20th [Page 200] General Conference in Rio, or at the related Board of Governors’meetings.2 Such a development would be a serious setback to our continuing efforts to halt further proliferation of nuclear weapons. South African suspension would, in effect, deal a serious blow to our efforts to bring all South African nuclear facilities under IAEA safeguards. We are planning a strong démarche to IAEA member nations emphasizing the serious consequences which could follow the suspension of South Africa from the IAEA.

We look for parallel action on your part, given the gravity of the problem.3 I know this will be a tough fight, but it is certainly worth making. Warm regards, Henry A. Kissinger. Unquote.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files. Confidential; Priority; Exdis. Drafted by Keogh; cleared in AF, EUR, OES, and IO; and approved by Kissinger.
  2. At the September meeting in Rio de Janeiro, the Group of 77 requested a review of South Africa’s designation as the member of the Board of Governors from Africa. The South African delegation’s credentials were not rejected until September 1979, at the General Conference in New Delhi. (David Fischer, History of the International Atomic Energy Agency, p. 93)
  3. In telegram 13941 from London, September 3, the Embassy informed the Department of British agreement to join the U.S. lobbying effort against suspension of South Africa from the IAEA. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files)