May 28, 1959

KHRUSHCHEV ON GREECE: London, 27 – During a speech yesterday in a suburb Tirana, Albania, Soviet Prime Minister Nikita Khrushchev made the following statement: «The Greeks are wonderful people. The Soviet people want to live in friendship with them. There was a time when the Russians shed their blood to liberate Greece from the Turkish yoke. Today the government of Greece is willing to allow its territory to be used for the establishment of American missile bases. But we also have bases that can confront these threats. Who will suffer? The Greek population, above all. It appears that the Greek government dos not realize that it is in its country’s best interests, the interests of its people and in the interest of peace not to allow these missile bases to be built on Greek territory.» AVEROFF’S REPLY: Greek Foreign Minister Evangelos Averoff said yesterday that threats such as those expressed by PM Khrushchev often had the opposite result of their intention, but the decision (regarding the bases) would be taken by the Greek government in cooperation with the military leadership and based on the country’s best interests. Greece, he said, was too small and poor a country to be able to bow to advice from its closest friends or threats from others.