Publication: The Daily Telegraph

Full Citation

  • Title Soviet Reply Intensifies Berlin Crisis
  • Author By Our Diplomatic Correspondent
  • Publication Title The Daily Telegraph
  • Collection The Daily Telegraph
  • Date Thursday,  July 15, 1948
  • Issue Number 29034
  • Page Number [1]
  • Place of Publication London, England
  • Language English
  • Document Type Article
  • Publication Section News
  • Source Library The Telegraph Media Group
  • Copyright Statement © Telegraph Media Group Limited.
SOVIET REPLY INTENSIFIES BERLIN CRISIS POWERS BLAMED FOR DIFFICULTIES By Our Diplomatic Correspondent The uncompromising tone of the Russian reply must be regarded as most unsatisfactory. It has greatly increased the seriousness of the Berlin situation. Besides failing to give any assurance that the Berlin blockade will be lifted, Russia also categorically rejects another main point in the Western protest, that Berlin is not part of the Soviet zone but is an international zone. The Soviet Note asserts that Berlin is part of the Soviet zone.. * In short, while repeating all the old arguments about the " violation " of Potsdam and the "splitting of Germany," Russia places all the blame for the difficulties in Germany on Britain, the United States and France. The Note declares that, by " violation of the agreed decisions on the administration of Berlin," the Western Powers are rendering null and void their right to participate in the occupation of Berlin. This grave assertion, which goes to the heart of the Western protests, will be flatly rejected by the three Powers who assert they are in Berlin "as a matter of established right derived from the defeat and surrender. of Germany and confirmed by formal agreements." The only glimmer of hope in the Soviet reply is the intimation that Russia would not object to FourPower negotiations in Berlin. But the Note makes it clear that the Russians want discussions about the whole of Germany, while the three Powers only ottered to discuss the Berlin administration. The intransigence of the Soviet reply suggests that negotiations to reopen discussions on the whole of Germany would be futile. DETAILS TO GEN. ROBERTSON Details of the Note have been sent to Gen. Sir Brian Robertson. British C.-in-C. in Germany. The delivery^ of the reply, which was in Russian, was unexpected in London. It was taken to the Foreign Office yesterday morning by M. Zarubin, the Russian Ambassador. Notice of his arrival was so short that, as Mr. - Bevin was engaged elsewhere, he could not receive the Ambassador. M. Zarubin handed the reply to Mr.. McNeil. Minister of State, The Soviet Government disregarded diplomatic procedure and did not deliver its reply to the British, United States and French Embassies in Moscow, but sent it direct to the Russian Embassies in the three Western capitals. The .three Powers' Notes of protest were handed to the Russian Ambassadors in London, Washington and Paris on July 6 for transmission to Moscow.