33 Cranborne to Commonwealth Government

Cablegram 36 LONDON, 10 February 1945, 6.30 p.m.

SECRET

Your telegram No. 24. [1]

The approach, though perforce made in the absence of Stettinius, was nevertheless a formal diplomatic approach in the name of the three Governments and was made to the Assistant Secretary of State (Clayton) who has been specially charged by the President with the handling of these questions. In the circumstances, the request that the matter should be kept open pending Stettinius's return would, we feel, be dangerous as likely to cause offence to Clayton on whose goodwill we shall be much dependent in these matters. We are, however, asking Lord Halifax, if he sees no objection, to take a suitable opportunity of having a word himself with Clayton with a view to underlining the importance attached to the proposal and ensuring that it is given as sympathetic consideration as possible.

2. As regards the recent meeting of the Governing Body of the International Labour Office, we fully shared the view expressed in paragraph 3 of your telegram No. 12 [2] that it would be unwise to disclose the proposal to the Governing Body before the approach had been made to the United States Government. When the matter came up, therefore, our representative could say nothing about the proposed approach, but he none the less urged strongly that the Governing Body should take this opportunity to consider how best they could be associated with an inter-Governmental Conference if called. The Governing Body took the view, however, that it would be premature for them to consider this until the reactions of the Governments to the Philadelphia resolution were known.

1 Document 20.

2 Document 9.

[AA: A1066, ER45/2/3/2]