366 Cablegram to Canberra

Jakarta, 9 December 1975


Portuguese Timor

Sunarso (BAKIN) phoned us this afternoon saying that he had been instructed to request that if any Portuguese warships passed through Darwin for refuelling or revictualling, that they be delayed from leaving Darwin until at least 15 December.

  1. When asked for reasons for this request Sunarso said that request was aimed at preventing any possibility that the two Portuguese frigates currently in the Atauro area might obstruct or interfere with future military moves. If the frigates remained at Atauro this would not be a problem. However if they called at Darwin Indonesians would not wish the frigates to leave Darwin earlier than 15 December.
  2. We stressed to Sunarso that we could give no guarantees that we could meet this request. Sunarso said that he understood this perfectly. He had made this same point to his superiors.1

[NAA: A10463, 801/13/1111, xvii]