HAVANA, Oct. 30, 1962 (UPI) -- Acting United Nations Secretary General Thant arrived here today to arrange for UN observation of the dismantling and removal of Soviet missile bases in Cuba. Thant said before boarding a chartered Varig Airlines jet in New York that he looked forward "to a fruitful exchange of ideas with Cuban Premier (Fidel) Castro...with a view to achieving a speedy and peaceful settlement of the problem.
The United States, at Thant's request, suspended "for the period of his two-day visit" enforcement of the blockade and aerial reconnaissance.
Eighteen aides accompanied Thant on his Cuban mission. They included Brig. Indar Jit Rikhye of India, his military adviser; Lt. Gen. Dag Inge Siternspetz of Sweden and UN undersecretaries Omar Loutfi of the United Arab Republic and Hernane Tavares De Sa of Brazil.
Before he left New York, Thant contacted several countries, including Sweden, Switzerland and Mexico, to prepare a UN observer force in Cuba.
Despite Castro's angry demands, he appeared to have little choice but to agree with any plane approved by Russia. The Kremlin seemed unimpressed by Castro's insistence that the United States should give up its Guantanamo Bay naval base.
Three American planes made surveillance flights over Cuba yesterday in an effort to determine whether launching pad construction work had stopped and missiles dismantled as Soviet Premier Nikita S. Khrushchev promised President Kennedy Sunday.
In Washington, Kennedy met this morning with his National Security Council executive committee. Expert interpretation of the aerial photographs made yesterday was believed presented at that time.
Assistant Defense Secretary Arthur Sylvester said the temporary halt to surveillance flights was ordered even though the U. S. lacks conclusive evidence work on the missile bases has been stopped.
Sylvester declined comment on reports that two Soviet submarines were tracked near the blockade area for three days until they were forced to surface presumably because they ran out of air. The reports said destroyers watched them for signs of hostile intent but there was none.
As the blockade was suspended, Defense Department officials pointed out that no Soviet ships were approaching the quarantine line.
Thant would up arrangements for his quick trip to Cuba with a full round of diplomatic conferences yesterday.
Thant saw Soviet Deputy Foreign Minister Vasily V. Kuznetsov for a 35-minute conference early last night, their second of the day. After their earlier discussion, a UN spokesman said Kuznetsov was full of constructive suggestions for settling the Cuban crisis.
Thant spent an hour and 35 minutes with U. S. Ambassador Adlai E. Stevenson and John J. McCloy, a chairman of diplomatic task force appointed by President Kennedy yesterday to handle developments involved in "the conclusion of the Cuban crisis."
McCloy and the other two members of the task force, Undersecretary of State George W. Ball and Deputy Defense Secretary Roswell L. Gilpatric, were engaged in intensive consultations in New York, aimed at ending the Cuban crisis quickly with effective inspection of the war bases' removal.