516 Mr John Curtin, Prime Minister, to Mr A. T. Stirling, External Affairs Officer in London

Cablegram 202 CANBERRA, 3 June 1942

SECRET

For Bruce [1] from Curtin.

Your 218. [2]

Desire you inform United Kingdom Government that we appreciate step which it has taken in regard to Bowden and Ross. We have to say that the exclusion of Bowden and Ross is not acceptable. There are twenty-five Japanese officials in Australia and limiting the exchange of these to only eight Australians is utterly unjustified. We press for Ross and Bowden and do not agree otherwise.

1 High Commissioner in the United Kingdom.

2 Dispatched 2 June. On file AA:A981, Consuls 13, i. It reported that the Japanese Govt had requested that one or two officials of their Foreign Ministry should be permitted to travel on the evacuation ships to Loureco Marques so that they could proceed to Japanese missions in Europe. The U.K. Govt proposed to use this request as a quid pro quo for the inclusion of Bowden (see Document 333, note 1) and Ross (see Document 337, note 5) in the evacuation scheme. News of Bowden's death in February was not received in Australia until the end of the war.

[AA:A981, CONSULS 13, i]