358 Makin to Evatt

Cablegram 1181 WASHINGTON, 29 August 1947, 1.20 p.m.

MOST IMMEDIATE SECRET

Japanese Settlement.

Your telegram 1031 and my 1173.

1. The State Department have asked me to transmit the following message to you from the Secretary of State.

Begins:

Your personal message of 26th August has just been relayed to me here at Rio. I agree with the urgency of the Japanese Peace settlement but cannot possibly arrange meeting before the opening of the General Assembly. Your support of our voting proposal is most gratifying. Warm regards. Ends.

2. In conversation with the Minister [1] this morning Penfield [2], Acting Head of the Office of Far Eastern Affairs, referred to his earlier statement that the meeting might be held during the 'first lull' after the Assembly started. He said the United Nations Division of the State Department considered that this lull was likely soon after the opening of the Assembly-i.e. in the third week of September.

3. Penfield said that State Department would be very glad if you could indicate as early as possible the broad lines of what you had in mind as subject matter for the initial meeting. The United Kingdom in their reply to the original United States proposal had envisaged 'determination of questions of policy and principle'. On the other hand the State Department rather contemplated settling procedural matters. If it were a question of more substantial discussions he went on it would be difficult for the United States to make preparations in a hurry.

4. As regards to place, Penfield said the State Department now felt the initial meeting should be held in New York. A meeting to be held during the Assembly would be very hard to arrange elsewhere.

When it got to the drafting stage however, the State Department were of an open mind as between East and West coast. Some countries he added had said that they might run into staffing difficulties if drafting Conference were held further away from New York than Washington during the Assembly.

1 i.e. Stirling.

2 James K. Penfield.

[AA : A1068, ER47/31/26]