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Cablegate: Presidential Correspondence

O 192012Z DEC 87
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO AMEMBASSY TUNIS IMMEDIATE

UNCLAS STATE 393879

LIMITED OFFICIAL USE

E.O. 12356: N/A
TAGS: OPDC TS
SUBJECT: PRESIDENTIAL CORRESPONDENCE

1. ON DECEMBER 11 THE TUNISIAN EMBASSY TRANSMITTED THE
FOLLOWING MESSAGE FROM PRESIDENT BEN ALI TO PRESIDENT
REAGAN: .

BEGIN TEXT:

THE WASHINGTON SIGNING OF THE TREATY FOR THE DISMANTLING
OF THE INTERMEDIATE MISSILES PROVIDES ME AN OCCASION TO
SEND YOU MY HEARTY CONGRATULATIONS FOR THIS HISTORIC ACT
WHICH WITHOUT A DOUBT WILL BE A LANDMARK ON THE ROAD TO
NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT. THIS ACCORD COULD HAVE COME ABOUT
THANKS ONLY TO YOUR POLITICAL COURAGE, YOUR KEEN SENSE OF
RESPONSIBLITY AND YOUR DETERMINATION TO WRITE A NEW PAGE
LIMITED OFFICIAL USE

LIMITED OFFICIAL USE

PAGE 02 STATE 393879

IN THIS HISTORY OF MANKIND. I CARRY THE HOPE THAT YOU
WILL OVERCOME ALL OBSTACLES IN ORDER TO BANISH THE
SPECTOR OF WAR AND CONFRONTATION IN THE WORLD AND TO
PRESERVE FUTURE GENERATIONS FROM DESTRUCTION. MAY THIS
DOCUMENT CONTRIBUTE TO TURNING THE PAGE OF THE PAST AND
TO OPENING A NEW ERA IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS FOUNDED
CHIEFLY ON COOPERATION, SOLIDARITY, AND DIALOGUE.

PLEASE ACCEPT, MR. PRESIDENT, THE ASSURANCES OF MY
HIGHEST ESTEEM. ZINE EL ABIDINE BEN ALI, PRESIDENT OF
THE REPUBLIC OF TUNISIA.

END TEXT.

2. PLEASE TRANSMIT FOLLOWING MESSAGE FROM PRESIDENT
REAGAN TO PRESIDENT BEN ALI AT THE EARLIEST POSSIBLE
OPPORTUNITY:

BEGIN TEXT:

DEAR MR. PRESIDENT,

I GREATLY APPRECIATE RECEIVING YOUR KIND NOTE
CONGRATULATING ME ON THE SUCCESSFUL SUMMIT WITH SOVIET
GENERAL SECRETARY GORBACHEV. WE BELIEVE THOSE MEETINGS
INDEED MARK A HISTORIC MOMENT IN ADVANCING INTERNATIONAL
SECURITY, AS WELL AS IN ESTABLISHING A MORE STABLE AND
CONSTRUCTIVE US RELATIONSHIP. THE INF TREATY THAT I
SIGNED WITH THE GENERAL SECRETARY IS CLEARLY A LANDMARK
ACHIEVEMENT: FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HISTORY OUR TWO
NATIONS HAVE AGREED TO REDUCE OUR NUCLEAR ARSENALS, NOT
JUST LIMIT THEIR GROWTH. AND THERE IS THE PROMISE OF
STILL GREATER PROGRESS IN PLACING EAST-WEST RELATIONS ON
A SOUNDER FOOTING.

MY TALKS WITH GORBACHEV WERE QUITE FRANK AND CANDID --
NEITHER OF US ATTEMPTED TO MASK OUR DISAGREEMENTS. THE
GENERAL SECRETARY UNDERSTANDS THAT IMPROVEMENTS IN OUR
RELATIONSHIP CAN RESULT ONLY IF WE SERIOUSLY ADDRESS THE
ENTIRE FOUR-PART AGENDA: HUMAN RIGHTS, REGIONAL CONCERNS,
BILATERAL MATTERS AND ARMS REDUCTIONS. WE HAD A FRANK
AND VERY LIVELY EXCHANGE ON ALL OF THESE ISSUES, AND
WHILE WE DID NOT MAKE BREAKTHROUGHS IN EVERY AREA, I AM
ENCOURAGED BY THE SERIOUSNESS WITH WHICH GORBACHEV IS
CONSIDERING OUR POINT OF VIEW.

BEST WISHES FOR A HAPPY NEW YEAR.

SINCERELY, RONALD REAGAN

END TEXT.

3. DEPARTMENT HAS NO INTENTION OF RELEASING TEXT BUT HAS
NO OBJECTION SHOULD GOT CHOOSE TO DO SO.


WHITEHEAD

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