239 Addison to Australian Government

Cablegram 171 LONDON, 4 August 1947, 5.25 p.m.


Your telegrams No. 209 [1] of 2nd August and No. 210 [2] of 3rd August.


We are sure that you will understand that the United Kingdom Representative's abstention from voting on the Security Council Resolution [3] did not signify any dissent from the Council's objective, namely, the immediate cessation of hostilities and a peaceful settlement. You will, however, have seen from my telegram D No. 670 [4] that for reasons of considerable consequence to us we were anxious to avoid any procedure that would prejudge the question of domestic jurisdiction or raise the question of the exact juridical status of Indonesia. The resolution put forward by the United States Representative which he stated was designed to by-pass those difficulties did not in fact appear to us to do so;

its reference to parties to hostilities and to a dispute might certainly be held to imply that Article 2(7) of the Charter does not apply to the Indonesian troubles and the United Kingdom Representative acting on the instructions which he had received (see paragraph 2 of my telegram D No. 670) felt bound on this account to abstain from voting.

2. As regards your telegram No. 210 the present position appears to be that the Netherlands Government have announced that they are prepared to accept mediation of the United States Government and that they have issued instructions for cessation of hostilities at midnight tonight. The Indonesian attitude is less clear but it would seem that they may make simultaneous cessation of hostilities on their part conditional on withdrawal of Dutch Armed Forces behind demarcation lines fixed on 19th October, 1946. It seems most unlikely that the Netherlands Government would agree to this. Our own view is that since the United States have offered mediation which has been accepted at any rate by the Dutch, the major task of bringing about a settlement now devolves upon the United States and it is no longer appropriate that the United Kingdom should intervene to put pressure on either party. We have expressed to the United States the hope that they will keep us closely informed of progress of events.

1 Document 227.

2 Document 232.

3 See Documents 224 and 226.

4 Document 230.

[AA:A1838/274, 854/10/4, ii]