95 Commonwealth Government to Cranborne

Cablegram 73 CANBERRA, 24 March 1944

SECRET

Your telegrams D.265 [1] and D.266. [2]

1. We assume declaration is proposed for political warfare purposes and would be glad if we could be informed more fully of reasons for making a declaration. Timing would be important and we are not aware of circumstances which would make early declaration appropriate. 2. Last paragraph of D.265, however, suggests that draft declaration might also have purpose of sounding United States attitude to future of Siam. Any indications received would interest US.

3. In regard to content of declaration, Australian Government is in general accord with policy of re-establishing Siam as a free and independent State. Considering, however, our direct and vital interest in the post-war settlement in South-East Asia, especially in provisions for security, we feel it should always be in mind in any dealings concerning Siam, that there should be no commitments regarding Siam's independent statehood which would hinder or preclude satisfactory arrangements to ensure strategic requirements of security in this region. We are also concerned that independence should not be interpreted to the prejudice of arrangements for collaboration in development and welfare.

4. We would hope that at the international conference contemplated in Article 34 of Australia - New Zealand Agreement [3] opportunity would be taken to exchange information and views on position of Siam as part of a general Pacific settlement.

1 Document 53.

2 Document 54.

3 Document 26.

[AA:A1067, P146/2/13/1]