The United States Secretary of State, Dr. Henry Kissinger, said on Tuesday (27 April) that?
The United States Secretary of State, Dr. Henry Kissinger, said on Tuesday (27 April) that his country is totally dedicated to promoting black majority-rule in Rhodesia. He was speaking at State House in the Zambian capital, Lusaka.
In his statement, Dr. Kissinger said that the white minority government in Rhodesia "cannot expect Untied States support, either in diplomacy or in material help, at any stage in its conflict with African states or African liberation movements."
The Secretary of State ha earlier met the Rhodesian nationalist leader, Joshua Nkomo at the Intercontinental Hotel. It was Dr. Kissinger's first meeting with any of the nationalist leaders of the African National Council (ANC). Mr. Nkomo is head of the Rhodesian-based faction of the ANC.
Mr. Nkomo said a war situation existed in Rhodesia following the breakdown of constitutional talks. He said that his movement was not opposed to the whites remaining in Rhodesia but they firmly opposed a long transition period before majority-rule.
Dr. Kissinger's policy-statement on Rhodesia came as a shock for many at State House. After the Secretary of State had finished speaking the Zambian President, Kenneth Kaunda, stepped towards him and the two men hugged an embraced cheek to cheek.
President Kaunda had already spoken, but he went on to say "some of us were emotionally charged when you were speaking. We couldn't believe this was the secretary of State from Washington, D.C." He added that it marked an important turning point from the past.
Dr. Kissinger is on a two-week tour of Africa which e started on 23 April. Zambia was the third African state that he visited and he was due to on to Zaire.
This film is serviced with part of Dr. Kissinger's statement at State House. A full transcript appears below.