221 Department of External Affairs to Embassy in Washington

Cablegram 982 CANBERRA, 14 August 1947, 5.05 p.m.

IMMEDIATE SECRET

Reference D.332 and D.333 containing a suggestion that the United Kingdom Government, in consultation with the United States Government who will take similar action, is proposing to send a note to the Soviet Government regarding attempts to obtain an economic stranglehold on countries of Eastern Europe. The proposal is to publish the text of the note after presentation, and to arrange for publicity of certain aspects.

2. We have replied as follows- Begins: Such a move as you suggest will, in our view, lead to charges and counter charges with little beneficial result.

Complaints of this nature are best made in the appropriate international body, which we consider to be the Assembly of the United Nations, and which could arrange for an enquiry into all allegations of economic penetration for political purposes. Ends.

3. You should take an opportunity to impress upon the United States Government that, in our view, the approach they are suggesting can lead to no useful result and will merely increase the difficulties being experienced in relations with the Soviet Union. Moreover, this procedure is one which by-passes the United Nations and cannot therefore receive our support.

[AA : A1068, E47/34/1/1]