83. Telegram From the Department of State to the Mission in Geneva1

77166. Subject: USUSSR Chemical Weapons Negotiations, Seventh Round: Supplementary Guidance. Ref: (A) State 43532 (B) Geneva 2410.3

State CW message—

1. This message provides general guidance for continuance of round seven discussions following return of experts to Geneva. This [Page 187]guidance supplements that provided earlier (Ref A). Detailed responses to questions posed Ref A are being provided separately.

2. Del should seek to isolate those issues which resist resolution at Delegation level and thus may need to be addressed by senior officials on both sides. To permit such a judgment to be made, the Delegation should seek to focus bilateral efforts on resolving issues in the areas listed below, giving particular attention to verification. Specific issues and detailed U.S. views are presented in the approved guidance papers.

A. Irritants and riot control chemicals;

B. Provisions for super-toxic chemicals;

C. Type and quantity of chemicals and delivery devices which can be retained;

D. Challenge inspection-related questions:

(1) Rights and functions of personnel carrying out challenge on-site inspection,

(2) Obligation to provide a full explanation if a request for challenge inspection is refused,

E. Declaration of stocks and facilities,

(1) General declaration of stocks prior to entry-into-force of the convention,

(2) Declaration of facilities,

F. Required international on-site verification;

G. Extent of use of toxic chemicals in field training exercises.

3. In context of discussion of negotiation and implementation of any multilateral chemical weapons convention, the Delegation should assure Soviets that U.S. considers it important for the U.S. and USSR to work in close cooperation on a bilateral basis both before and after the convention comes into force. The Delegation should indicate that U.S. will present some ideas at a later stage—but would also welcome Soviets suggestions on the best mechanism for such bilateral cooperation and consultation.

4. Delegation should continue to brief allied reps in Geneva during course of negotiations. In addition, consultations with the UK, FRG and France should be offered in London, Bonn and/or Paris as appropriate.

5. We believe that period between round seven and round eight should be long enough for thorough review in capitals of status of negotiations. Due to participation of some US Del members in SSOD, it would not be practical to resume during SSOD. Del may tentatively agree on late July date for beginning round eight. Date should be subject to confirmation through diplomatic channels in mid-June.

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6. Telegram State 71817 should be counted as State CW Message 19 (not repeat not 36).4

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D780131–0619. Confidential; Priority. Sent for information to Moscow, London, Bonn, and Paris. Drafted by Robert Mikulak (ACDA/MA); cleared by Les Denend (NSC), Robert Weekley (DOD), John Kokolas (CIA), and Margot Mazeau (ACDA); and approved by Thomas Davies (ACDA/MA).
  2. See Document 79.
  3. This February 16 telegram from the Mission in Geneva summarized the major issues the United States and Soviets would discuss during the seventh round of chemical weapons negotiations. These included: whether or not to exclude irritants or riot control agents from an agreement, verification provisions for “super-toxic” chemicals, which types of chemical weapons could be retained by the two nations, whether or not either nation could conduct “challenge inspections” should one believe the other had not complied with an agreement, a declaration by both sides of their current stocks of weapons and their production facilities, and international on-site verification, which the U.S. considered “the key unresolved issue.” (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D780071–0902)
  4. In telegram 71817 to Geneva, March 20, the Department authorized the Mission in Geneva to agree to reactivate the chemical warfare talks on March 25. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D780123–0662)