192 Van Aerssen to Curtin

Aide-memoire [14 May 1943] [1]

Having taken note of Dr. Evatt's speeches [2], the Government of the Netherlands wants to point out that, although they fully recognize the desirability of establishing, after the war, the security in [sic] the West and South-West Pacific areas by the common efforts of friendly Powers in mutual co-operation, they cannot agree with the claim (as expressed by Dr. Evatt) of any Power, however friendly its relation to us, to become a 'partner' in the process of developing and assisting the Indonesian people.

My Government want to make it quite clear, however, that they mean to welcome in the future, as in the past, the full collaboration of all foreign elements who wish to contribute to the prosperity of the Netherlands Indies, provided a harmonious internal development is not endangered.

1 This aide-memoire was handed to Curtin on 14 May by Baron F. C.

van Aerssen, Netherlands Minister to Australia. See minute dated 14 May on file AA:A989, 43/600/5/1/2.

2 Van Aerssen attached to this aide-memoire extracts from press reports which quoted Evatt (then in New York) as saying that after the war Australia and the Netherlands East Indies could become partners in developing and assisting the Indonesian people.

[AA:A989, 43/600/5/1/2]