13 Hodgson to Evatt and Department of External Affairs

Cablegrams 9, 99 PARIS, 8 July 1946, 3.40 p.m.

IMPORTANT SECRET

SOUTH SEAS COMMISSION

The French Ministry of Foreign Affairs has now given written intimation of its willingness to accept the invitation to the proposed Canberra Conference.

This states that the French Government favours the creation of a commission in principle subject to the understanding that its functions will be limited to practical and technical objects such as health, communications and education and that it would not have any political function.

The French Government records that it has embraced the principles laid down by Articles 73 and 74 of the United Nations Charter [1] and consequently regard[s] as inopportune inclusion in the commission's programme of a political object already the subject of that undertaking. With this reservation the French Government would be glad to send a representative to the proposed Canberra Conference.

Translation of the note containing the above follows by air mail.

HODGSON

1 These articles listed aims for the administration of non-self- governing territories, including preparation for self-government.

[AA:A1067, ER46/2/7]