159. Memorandum of Conversation1


  • Secretary’s Meeting with Archbishop Makarios


  • U.S.
  • The Secretary
  • Under Secretary Sisco
  • Deputy Assistant Secretary Stabler
  • Mr. William L. Eagleton, EUR/SE (Notetaker)
  • Cyprus
  • Archbishop Makarios
  • Ambassador Dimitriou
  • Mr. Angelides

(The first 25 minutes of the conversation were tête-à-tête between the Secretary and the Archbishop.)2

The Secretary (to Stabler): Do we now have a Turkish Government?

Stabler: No. A Prime Minister has been designated but he has not yet formed a government.

The Secretary: Then there is no Foreign Minister?

Stabler: No, not yet.

[Page 541]

The Secretary: Will the government have the support of the parties?

Stabler: Supposedly it will, but it would be to some extent a caretaker government.

The Secretary: Would it be able to negotiate?

Stabler: If it is merely to prepare for elections it is doubtful.

The Secretary: When are the elections?

Stabler: Probably next spring.

Makarios: This is very unfortunate.

I get the impression from the Secretary of State that we have agreed on a solution because we have agreed on certain views I have presented.

The Secretary: I have explained to the Archbishop the missed opportunity for a solution last August.

Makarios: The Secretary indicated that a solution would be postponed until after the Greek elections.

The Secretary: No, that was not the point. Since October we have been involved and have obtained gestures but our Congress intervened3 and caused the postponing of my visit to Ankara. This delayed negotiations. By the time things were ready here the Ecevit government was not in a position to receive me. We are prepared to continue the course I outlined. We want a settlement that meets the needs of the parties. I cannot claim that there has been any progress until we have talked with the Turkish Government.

We have not foreclosed the kind of solution proposed by His Beatitude. I pointed out that the possibilities for progress in negotiations on behalf of various other parties who have sought our help were on the basis of good faith. After the Greek elections we will not accept any more pressures of the type we have had. This comment is not directed at the Archbishop.

There is now a difficulty in that until we talk to the Turks we do not know the dimensions of the problems. In any case, U.S. influence will be needed for any solution even if it is to reduce the size of the Turkish zone in a bizonal solution. We know that negotiations will involve an active U.S. role in which concessions will be substantially on the Turkish side.

(Chanting is audible from the street.)

Are those some of my students?

In the course of negotiations, I will be able to see better the terms of the solution that we might support.

Do you have anything to add, Joe?

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Sisco: I have just been explaining to Ambassador Dimitriou our regret that your visit to Ankara was not possible since there had been prospects for some movement forward at that time.

Makarios: I forgot to say that a reduction of Turkish troops on the island would not necessarily be considered to be in our interest since it might be better to have a large number of troops remain there to increase the Turkish economic problem.

The Secretary: Will you be saying that on TV?

Makarios: No.

The Secretary: There are two phases that will be necessary: one would be the movement in the direction of negotiations, and, two, would be political talks in which we can see the possible outcome. Without such talks we are only dealing with theory. To get talks going there have to be developments in Turkey. I told the Archbishop that in connection with the NATO meeting I would perhaps be prepared to go to Ankara to continue our efforts or, if not that, to meet with the Greek and Turkish Foreign Ministers who will be at the NATO meeting.

  1. Source: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box CL 272, Memoranda of Conversations, Chronological File. Secret; Nodis. Drafted by Eagleton and approved in S/S on November 16. The meeting was held in the Secretary’s office.
  2. No record of this portion of the conversation has been found.
  3. Reference is to the Congressional vote on October 17 to cut off military aid to Turkey.