44 Mr A.T. Stirling, External Affairs Officer in London, to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 62 LONDON, 20 March 1939

SECRET

Timor. I understand Dominions Office are shortly telegraphing to United Kingdom High Commissioner, Canberra [1], with regard to representations on behalf of Commonwealth to Portuguese Government concerning Timor to which Portuguese Government have not yet replied despite a recent reminder. They are also mentioning the rumour that Japanese are trying to do a deal with Portugal under which in return for Japan's guaranteeing Macao, the Portuguese would adhere to the Anti-Comintern Pact, recognise Manchukuo and grant Japan air base in Timor. It seems improbable that Portugal would grant air base and I understand Foreign Office have heard nothing about any such suggestion from the Dutch. I am mentioning the matter as Dominions Office telegram is not yet finalised and its contents may take a little while to reach you.

STIRLING

1 Sir Geoffrey Whiskard. See Document So.

[AA: A981, GERMANY 58B]