Serial 47 • SITREP X

[Editor’s note: This document was released both as a State Department cable as part of its 1981 FOIA release, and as Serial 47 and Serial 468 of the FBI’s RYMUR release. The text was released at https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/1978STATE294561_d.html.]

CONFIDENTIAL
PAGE 01
STATE 294561
ORIGIN ARA-15
INFO OCT-01 EUR-12 EA-10 NEA-11 ISO-00 SSO-00 DODE-00 FBIE-00 CA-01 ICAE-00 H-01 PA-01 SS-15 NSCE-00 CIAE-00 INR-10 NSAE-00 TRSE-00 SCS-06 MCT-02 INRE-00 SY-05 SYE-00 USSS-00 AID-05 CCO-00 OC-06 JUSE-00 SVC-00 CG-00 DOTE-00 L-03 /104 R
DRAFTED BY ARA:RBRUCE
APPROVED BY ARA:JBUSHNELL
S/S-O:TGMARTIN
——————119697 211415Z /40

O 211343Z NOV 78
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO AMEMBASSY GEORGETOWN IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY PANAMA IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY CARACAS IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY PORT OF SPAIN IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY LONDON IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY PARAMARIBO IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY KUWAIT IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY ABU DHABI IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY TEHRAN IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY TOKYO IMMEDIATE
CINCSOUTHCOM QUARRY HTD CANAL ZONE
CINCMAC SCOTT AFB ILL
US REDCOM/RCJ2 MACDILL AFB FLA
USCINCARRED FT. MCPHERSON GA
CDR 18TH AIRBORNE CORPS FT. BRAGG NC
C O N F I D E N T I A L STATE 294561
LONDON FOR MICHAEL FINLEY, TOKYO FOR SENATOR HAYAKAWA
E.O. 11652: GDS
TAGS: CASC, OREP (RYAN, LEO), GY

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PAGE 02
STATE 294561

SUBJECT: SITUATION REPORT NO. X
REFERENCE: STATE 294531 AND PREVIOUS

1. We are awaiting Embassy views on our suggestion that the victims of the Jonestown tragedy be buried at Jonestown, given the long time of the bodies in open air and the fact that we won’t have significant helicopter lift capacity until Wednesday. Ambassador [John] Burke is currently consulting with the Guyanese authorities on this situation. Meanwhile the airlift of helicopters and supplies into Georgetown begins this morning with the arrival of three aircraft carrying support equipment and two unassembled helicopters. Local burial will not significantly reduce the need for U.S. equipment and personnel needed to carry out search and rescue operations in cooperation with Guyanese authorities. Three HH-53 helicopters are scheduled to arrive in Georgetown tomorrow morning as well as four additional light helicopters.

2. Six FBI agents, Jim Ward (SCA) and Fred Shaver (ICA) are scheduled to depart MacDill AFB at 11:55 am today. The agents will join a legal attache from Caracas who arrived yesterday.

3. The Embassy is looking into the possibility that the otter damaged in the ambush at Port Kaituma can be repaired if parts were to be flown in by our military task force.

4. The press pool which visited Jonestown yesterday has begun to file detailed stories. The pool was made up of Charles Krause and Frank Johnson of the Washington Post, Mohamed Hamaludin of Reuters/CANA and a Guyanese photo[-]

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PAGE 03 STATE 294561

grapher.

Vance [Cyrus Vance, Secretary of State]

CONFIDENTIAL

Originally posted on May 16th, 2018.

Last modified on June 30th, 2022.
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