463 Critchley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram K13 BATAVIA, 11 December 1947, 7 p.m.


Following is brief summary of events during the last two days. [1]

1. The Committee has under consideration comments of the Netherlands on rules of procedure (see document SAC10). [2]

2. At the second meeting Tuesday the Netherlands delegation gave notice of presenting formal statement at the next meeting. They insisted that the statement should be presented before agreeing to my suggestion that the Committee confer informally with each delegation before proceeding further with substantive talks. My idea was that these informal talks would give the Committee time to arrive at a preliminary understanding so that it would be able to take the initiative in political discussions.

3. Abdulkadir presented statement at the third meeting yesterday (translation of speech being forwarded by air mail).

Main points of the speech were- (a) Historical development of the Republic pointing out that birth largely due to collaboration with Japanese.

(b) Setting up of provisional Governments in East Indonesia etc.

as first of the component parts of the future United States of Indonesia.

(c) Conclusion that no solution possible without actual observance of cease fire order.

(d) Distrust of the Republic. 'If an agreement between the two governments be concluded it would seem advisable to obtain some guarantee that conditions of agreement shall be fulfilled by the Republican people, this in view of experience gained during the last two years.' 4. Sjarifoeddin then presented a statement (also being sent by air mail) in which the following are the main points- (a) Historical review of the movement.

(b) Explanation of the position under Japanese domination.

(c) Linggadjati agreement was eventually signed in an 'unfavourable atmosphere' as many acts 'had greatly diminished hopes in the sincerity of the Dutch intention to implement'.

(d) Object of Dutch actions prior to police action and police [action] itself 'appeared to be nothing short of complete annihilation of the Republic of Indonesia and establishment of one or more puppet states in its place'.

(e) 'Dutch intensified military operations on August 1st'.

(f) When the Security Council intervened Dutch 'policy of political encirclement and [3] fragmentization was greatly intensified'. Creation of autonomous territory within the Republic's de facto territory was accelerated.

(g) The Republic 'will abide by the Security Council's decisions'.

(h) Implementation of the cease hostilities and settlement of political dispute should take place immediately and concurrently.

Political dispute forms the basis of all points because only by settlement of political questions final solution of military question will be reached automatically.

5. The Netherlands document contains a good deal of inflammatory material but at the request of the Committee, both parties agreed they would not publish their documents.

6. I drew attention to the conclusion reached in the Netherlands statement that a solution was not possible without actual observance [of] the cease fire and obtained a specific statement that the Netherlands delegation was not of the view that political negotiations could not be carried on until negotiations over the cease fire were completed. I also took advantage of this part of the speech to stress the importance of acceptance by the Netherlands of the Committee's plan for a speedy and effective truce [4] and expressed the hope that both parties would agree that the Committee of Good Offices could go ahead evolving plans for the administration of demilitarized zones.

7. Informal talks will be held with each party separately today.

There will be no further meetings on political discussions for some days to enable the Committee to decide its own attitude. I shall put our point of view as to basis on which political discussions should take place as forcibly as possible, but it is already quite clear that the Americans with, it seems, the agreement of the Belgians and Indonesians, are determined to start from a reconsideration of Linggadjati.

8. Early discussions of Linggadjati would probably turn on Article 1. [5] I should be glad to have a fully documented legal clarification of this Article bearing in mind the Dutch declaration [6] that they have recognised the exercise of de facto authority and not de facto authority itself.

1 The second and third meetings of the Renville Conference were held on 9 and 10 December.

2 Not printed. The correct reference for the provisional rules of procedure submitted by the Committee of Good Offices on 9 December is S/AC.10/CONF.2/1.

3 A sign here indicates 'probable meaning of mutilated group'.

4 Document 449.

5 See Appendix I.

6 A sign here indicates 'probable meaning of mutilated group'.

[AA:A1838/283, 403/3/1/1/, xiii]