15 Critchley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram K235 BATAVIA, 4 January 1949, 6.45 p.m.


At 1500 hours 3rd January the Committee was advised by the Netherlands Delegation that instructions had been received from The Hague permitting the Committee, the Consular Commission and Military Observers to carry out Security Council's instructions to report on the situation in Indonesia after 18th December, 1948.

Attached were copies of the Netherlands statements to the Security Council of 27th December and 29th December [1] and an undated order by Spoor that military activities and hostilities in Java were terminated on 31st December, 1948.

2. Spoor's order goes on 'after 31st December the task of the troops is consequently confined and limited to action against roving groups, bands or individuals who attempt to cause unrest or as was stated by our representative [2] to the Security Council to act against disturbing elements who either individually or collectively endanger public security or interfere with or prevent the supply of food and other essential commodities to needy population'.

3. In its reply the Committee has asked for an immediate meeting between the Committee's senior military observers and the Chief of Staff of the Netherlands Army to arrange details for redeployment of Military Observers and has expressed the hope that the Netherlands Delegation is now in a position to furnish the Committee with remaining information requested on 28th December.


4. The Committee has also asked the time of issue and other details concerning the order referred to above which does not seem known to Army Headquarters in Batavia at 6 p.m. 2nd January.

5. The Republic and Independent sources report that guerrilla resistance in Java continues. The Dutch now admit considerable damage to the town of Magelang and to estates in Solo area and estimate that rehabilitation of the latter will take two years. In Solo area estate labour has disappeared. The Dutch claim that they will be very shortly 'concluding' their Military operations in Sumatra.

1 See United Nations, Security Council Official Records, Third Year, No. 135, 393rd meeting, pp. 1-3 and No. 137, 396th meeting, pp. 26-7.

2 J.H. van Roijen.

3 See Document 487 in Volume XIII.

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