321 Critchley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram K193 BATAVIA, 22 November 1948, 9.45 p.m.

IMPORTANT SECRET

Netherlands have announced that Sassen, Stikker and Neher will form a delegation for discussions in Indonesia with both the Republican Government and Bandoeng Federalists 'in order to attain a final solution' of the Indonesian problem. The delegation will be assisted by some leading members of the States-General as observers and by some experts from the Netherlands. Other experts may be attached to the delegation in Indonesia.

2. The delegation will arrive in Batavia Wednesday and will be ready to proceed next day to Kaliurang where it is hoped that Hatta will have returned from Sumatra [1] to meet them. The observers and advisers will arrive some time later.

3. The Committee of Good Offices had intended to proceed to Kaliurang about the end of this week at the request of the Republic and in accordance with its usual practice of alternating between Republican and Netherlands Territory. At the informal request of the Netherlands this visit will probably be delayed so that the Committee cannot be accused of interfering with direct negotiations.

4. Instructions to the new delegation are not yet known but the Netherlands Authorities here suggest that resumption of negotiations will be based principally on:

(a) A preliminary demand by the Dutch for a tangible decline in the number of incidents ('truce violations') as a proof of Djokjakarta goodwill and the Republican Government's power within its territory.

(b) Consideration of political points considered essential for the Netherlands concerning the general position of the High Representative of the Crown and particularly his powers over the armed forces during the interim period.

1 See Document 318.

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