291 Landale to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram Hag 167 THE HAGUE, 29 October 1948

Emergency Bill for Indonesia, reference your telegram 110 [1] and my telegram 163. [2] It appears that a bill containing provisions in final form for the setting up of the Interim Government in Indonesia is in the process of being drafted.

2. In the meantime the Emergency Bill which is being debated by First Chamber today gives authority to Netherlands Government (subject to subsequent ratification by States General within one month) to take all necessary measures of a general nature 'for the preparation of and the transition to the new legal status'.

3. No specific measures have as yet been announced but I believe these will eventually provide for the institution, as the situation requires, of the part or whole of the administrative machinery of the Interim Government. For example, it is reported that BEEL is proceeding to Batavia to take up position of High Commissioner. If this is so the government would, according to my understanding, have to abolish formally the post of Lieutenant Governor General and introduce that of High Commissioner.

4. The comprehensive Bill mentioned in para. 1 is presumably based on recent discussions with Federalists and I imagine that Government does not wish by its introduction now, to give the impression that it is limiting the scope of further discussions with Republicans.

5. The Emergency Bill, should as far as I can see, give Government a free hand for making adjustments to final form of Interim Government as between all parties concerned.

6. Text of Bill will be forwarded by next bag.

1 Dispatched on 29 October, it requested Landale to clarify the procedure of the Netherlands Government for setting up an Interim Government in Indonesia.

2 Document 288.

[AA:A8108/2, 280/1/48, i]