270 Department of External Affairs to Beasley, Forde, Hood and Critchley

Cablegrams 44, 56, 127, 39 CANBERRA, 4 March 1949, 5.35 p.m.

IMMEDIATE SECRET

INDONESIA

Please discuss position urgently with United Kingdom, Canadian Governments on the following lines.

Within the next few days the Security Council will be called upon to determine in the light of the report [1] of 1st March from the United Nations Commission on Indonesia what steps should next be taken in an effort to settle the Indonesian dispute.

It is clear from the Commission's report that the Dutch have not complied with the main requirements of the Council's resolution [2] of 28th January. They are not releasing the Republican political leaders unconditionally and they obviously do not intend to restore the Republican Government and to allow it to function at Djokjakarta. We have always held strongly to the view that until these conditions are fulfilled there can be no possibility of a satisfactory settlement which would take cognizance of the position and status acquired and maintained throughout the dispute by the Republican Government and recognised by the Security Council. The object of the 28th January resolution was to restore the Republic to a position where it could negotiate a settlement free from duress. This it cannot do if it is not functioning as a Government.

Our attitude is therefore that it is the duty of the Security Council to accept the fact, as reported by its Commission, that the Dutch have not complied with its instructions and to take whatever action it considers necessary, in accordance with the procedures of the United Nations Charter, to compel the Dutch to carry out its instructions.

If for any reason the Council is unable to agree on such enforcement action, the very least that it can do is in our view to ensure that any round table conference of all parties to the dispute, on the lines of the one which the Dutch have signified their intention of convening at The Hague, should take place under the auspices of the Security Council acting through its Commission, and at the Committee's invitation. It is essential that the powers of the Commission should not be less than those envisaged by the Security Council resolution.

Before such a conference takes place the Council should require the Dutch to acknowledge the existence of the Republican Government, to give its leaders an opportunity for consultation together, and to agree to its restoration at Djokjakarta. These requirements are necessary for practical reasons: if the Republican representatives are not allowed to negotiate as a Government there will be no assurance that their actions will have the support of their people or that guerilla activities can be halted. The venue of the proposed conference is perhaps not important, but we feel that New York might be preferable to The Hague.

In putting these views to the United Kingdom, Canadian Governments you should however, emphasize above all that, in accordance with our policy of complete support for the United Nations, we feel that the Security Council should not shrink from its obligation to follow up its decisions to the full extent.

1 See note 1 to Document 265.

2 Document 168.

[AA : A1838, 854/10/4/3, iv]