PARIS: Considerable perturbation has been caused in the highest French quarters by the leakage of a report that General de Gaulle has declined to go to Algiers to meet President Roosevelt. Inquiries early this morning [Feb 18] in French government quarters were met with evasion, but later today authorised officials of General de Gaulle’s entourage admitted that an invitation from President Roosevelt had been received but not accepted. The leakage is regarded in responsible quarters as a breach of faith. When giving the invitation to General De Gaulle, the United States Ambassador in Paris, Mr Jefferson Caffery, requested that the invitation as well as the memorandum should be treated as absolutely confidential.
French authorities are all the more indignant about the leakage because they now feel that their position has been gravely prejudiced by the premature one-sided publication and they still do not feel free to issue a full statement of their side of the matter. A high official of the French Foreign Office this morning called on the United States Ambassador and protested vigorously.
Published in Dawn, February 20th, 2020