355 Department of External Affairs to Eaton

Cablegram 282 CANBERRA, 29 September 1947


1. You have every right to maintain a leading position in the drafting of the report as the Australian observers are the only ones who turned up in time and the only ones who are in a position to make full report.

2. In particular, you must ensure that we have an opportunity of seeing the report in draft form before it is finalised by the Committee. This can best be done by your asking for an adjournment for a few days, without giving the reason, toward the end of deliberations, and by your cabling day by day any further progress made. The reason is that it is important that the report should be drafted, having in mind the various relevant political factors which will determine its reception at New York.

3. One matter which should be included is a firm recommendation regarding troop withdrawals. You have paved the way for this in the previous report by stating that no immediate solution could be suggested and implying that nothing but withdrawal could be effective. You should recommend also that the Consuls continue to observe and report at their discretion, assisted by military observers, until withdrawal has been completed and until, in view of the Consuls, there is no danger of any major breaches of the peace.

4. It is noted that the previous report [1] was transmitted to the Security Council through the State Department. It is not understood why this was so. [2] The report is not confidential once completed and should therefore be transmitted direct to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, confirmation copy being sent, if necessary, by the representatives of each country concerned. In view of the arrangements to the Committee of Three, we do not wish the precedent to be established of transmission through the State Department.

5. Please request all Service representatives when they return to pass through Canberra on their way to Melbourne as we should like to hear their impressions, though, at the same time, we realise that they are observers acting for you and have no formal report to make to this Department or to their own.

1 See Document 344.

2 Eaton replied on 30 September that the interim report had been transmitted through the Department of State because the Chairman of the Consular Commission was the United States Consul-General and because it was decided to send it in cypher.

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