117. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassies in Turkey and Yugoslavia1
Washington, July 23, 1974, 0159Z.
159043. Subject: Situation Report No. 14 (as of 1500 EDT, July 22).
- Military Situation on Cyprus: Both Greece and Turkey agreed to a cease-fire on Cyprus beginning at 10:00 a.m. EDT. Commanders of both forces were subsequently notified, but sporadic fighting still continues, especially around Nicosia airport where the Turks are trying to gain control. The Turks apparently have a firm grasp on Kyrenia on the north coast. Despite the many flaws in the cease-fire, the Governments of both Greece and Turkey seem relieved it is in effect and have given no signs of wanting to abrogate it.
- Talks: Greece and Turkey have agreed to meet this week in Geneva to begin talks on the Cyprus situation. The meeting will be held under UK auspices. Foreign Secretary Callaghan and Turkish Foreign Minister Gunes will attend, but Greece has not yet announced its representative. No agenda has yet been decided.
- Greece: Rumors of a coup overthrowing the Greek Government and Brigadier Ioannides have been circulating all day. The rumors stated that Lt. General Davos, the Commander of “C” Corps in Salonika, would replace General Gizikis as President. However, these rumors have been denied by the Androutsopoulos government and the Army, and the US Embassy in Athens has been unable to verify their truth. The British Ambassador has reported that the present GOG seems shaky, but has the appearance of conducting business routinely.
- NATO: The threat that Greece may pull out of NATO has virtually disappeared. Greek officers at NATO headquarters in Brussels are staying at their posts, but Greek officers assigned to subordinate NATO commands have been alerted to report home for mobilization. However, Greek sources expect they will remain in place. The NATO allies have expressed satisfaction at the cease-fire and the expectation of talks between the parties.
- Turkey: Prime Minister Ecevit held a press conference at which he stated US “contributed greatly to establishment of a cease-fire.” He also said he was very pleased that “serious war” did not break out with Greece, and that he did not expect a change in US-Turkish relations.
- In a press conference today, Foreign Minister Gunes stated that Turkey had put troops on Cyprus to ensure that the constitutional rights and physical safety of the Turkish community will be protected. Calling for a “sovereign independent” Cyprus, Gunes insisted that future constitutional arrangements must take into account the fact that there are “two sovereign peoples” in Cyprus. He seemed to be implying that Turkey will press hard for a federated regime in Cyprus.
- Evacuation: Evacuation by helicopter from Dhekalia SBA to CTF 61/62 for onward movement to Beirut has been completed. In addition to American citizens, 80 Lebanese nationals are aboard.
- Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files, 1974. Secret; Immediate. Drafted by Richard Miles (EUR). Repeated Immediate to Athens, Nicosia, Moscow, London, USUN, USNATO, the White House, and CINCEUR.↩