163 Critchley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram K126 [KALIURANG], 4 June 1948

SECRET

Van Vredenburch and Neher saw Hatta today (see my telegram K.124 [1]) regarding Russian recognition of the Republic. [2] They delivered an aide memoire [3] to the following effect:

A. The Netherlands Government notes:

(a) That Suripno had been authorised to negotiate.

(b) That the initiative was taken by Suripno.

(c) That this is in contravention of the first traditional Renville principle. [4]

B. The Netherlands Government believes that continuation of political dis-cussions can only be successful if identical conceptions exist with regard to the meaning and consequences of Netherlands sovereignty. The Netherlands Delegation has been instructed to elucidate this.

C. The Netherlands Government expect the Republican Government to make public a decision that it deems agreement with the U.S.S.R.

not to have been concluded and hopes for a reply from the Republican Government at an early date.

2. Perhaps a consequence of yesterday's discussion with Dubois (see my telegram K125) Neher and Van Vredenburch appeared this morning to be in a far more reasonable mood than usual. Van Vredenburch has suggested a number of formulas which might enable the Republic to disclaim agreement without embarrassment, has suggested that Hatta take time to think over the matter and that no firm stand should be taken at this stage by either party without further detailed consultation. In the meantime both parties have agreed to release nothing to the press.

3. Hatta's position is limited by the fact that the Republic is not prepared to give up its foreign relations until a satisfactory political settlement is reached and that a firm disavowal of the agreement might bring about his political downfall. The Left Wing Parties under Sjarifuddin are strongly supporting the agreement with Russia.

1 Document 161.

2 See Document 149.

3 Registered on 3 June as S/AC.10/CONF.2/C.I/10.

4 This should presumably read: 'first additional Renville principle' (see Principle 1 of Document 24).

[AA:A1838, 403/3/1/1, xvii]