28 Officer to Evatt

Cablegram Hague 50 THE HAGUE, 11 April 1947, 7.20 p.m.


The Minister for Foreign Affairs sent for me today and told me that Van Mook had informed him of Ballard's advice and that [we] wish to send trade, shipping etc. mission to the Netherlands East Indies.

2. Van Boetzelaer asked me to tell you that they are just initiating talks with Indonesian Authorities on economic subjects and are most anxious that nothing should occur meanwhile which might interfere with them. That such a mission as was contemplated could not be kept secret and would almost be certain to create difficulties. He wished me therefore to ask you to postpone the matter for the time being. He will keep me fully informed of developments and advise me as soon as the moment seems appropriate for visit of such a mission to be proposed.

3. I hear on good authority that Van Boetzelaer is being pressed by both the Prime Minister and the Minister for Overseas Territories to take, regarding the various reports of representation by or with the Indonesians, a much stronger line than he considers advisable. I hope therefore that you can meet him on this matter.

4. With reference to your telegram No. 35 I suggest that when you have come to some conclusion regarding representation with Indonesia you discuss the matter with the Netherlands Government informally, freely and frankly. I have advised in my telegram 46 their views that there cannot be an exchange with Indonesia at present. [1] This is amplified and explained in their memorandum sent you on April 8th under cover of despatch 71. [2]

1 Dispatched on 2 April, cablegram 46 reported that the Dutch press had reported proposals for Indonesian representation in Australia and that the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs held that under Article 12 of the Linggadjati Agreement there could be no separate representation until 1 January 1949. On 10 April, the Department of External Affairs informed the Legation (cablegram 35) that the question of the exchange of representatives with Indonesia was under consideration.

2 The figure 71 is incorrect. The memorandum was sent on 8 April under cover of dispatch Hag 15/47.

[AA:A1838/2, 401/1/3/2, i]