194 Department of External Affairs to Embassy in Washington

Cablegram 908 CANBERRA, 30 July 1947, 2 p.m.


My immediately following cable is text of statement [1] to be made at 4 p.m. today Canberra time on Indonesia.

2. You will see that we are raising the matter under Article 39 of the Charter. We are not calling for an investigation. We are endeavouring to obtain an immediate cessation of hostilities and reference by the two parties concerned to Article 17 of the Linggadjati Agreement, the text of which is as follows:-


(1) For the co-operation between the Netherlands Government and the Government of the Republic contemplated in this agreement, an organisation shall be called into existence, consisting of delegations to be appointed by each of the two Governments, with a joint Secretariat.

(2) The Netherlands Government and the Government of the Republic shall settle by arbitration any dispute, which might arise from this agreement and which cannot be solved by joint consultation in a conference between those delegations. In that case a Chairman of another nationality with a deciding vote shall be appointed by agreement between the delegations, or if such an agreement cannot be reached, by the President of the International Court of Justice. Ends.

3. Please explain to the State Department the procedure we are adopting. Our hope is that there will be no discussion on procedure that is the jurisdiction of the Security Council as the matter is clearly one of international concern. We will attempt also to avoid all discussion on the merits of the case on the grounds that there is no investigation. The one relevant fact is the existence of hostilities and the Security Council will be asked to order a cessation of these and reference to the Agreement referred to above. In this way no judgement of the case will be made except by the third party selected by the two par-ties in accordance with their own agreement.

4. In handling the matter in this way we hope that an effective decision will be taken immediately without debate and thereby prove the effectiveness of the Security Council acting under Article 39. We know that the United States Government has been hesitant to join with the United Kingdom Government in any attempt at mediation and we can appreciate the reasons. We hope, however, that these reasons will not prevent the United States Government strongly supporting a procedure such as we have suggested and which should lead immediately to a cessation of hostilities and mediation in accordance with an agreement the two parties have previously made.

5. Any debate on procedure or hesitation to have the matter dealt with in this way because of legal or constitutional doubts will in our view be interpreted by the peoples of South East Asia as a political rather than a legal attitude. Equally any delay in ordinary cessation of hostilities will have disastrous effect throughout South East Asia.

1 Document 195.

[AA:A1838/274, 854/10/4, i]