372 Critchley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram K302 BATAVIA, 2 May 1949, 10.30 a.m.

IMMEDIATE CONFIDENTIAL

Following the submission of the Netherlands Delegation reply [1] to the Republican Working Paper [2], (see my telegram K.301 [3]), Hatta came to Batavia on 24th April for informal discussions with Van Royen. The Republican Delegation and Hatta agreed on a formal reply to the Netherlands, via U.N.C.I., stressing that binding commitments to The Hague conference were impossible prior to the restoration of the Republican Government. This letter was carefully worded in conformity with the Security Council's resolution [4] and directive. [5] Although a deadlock appeared likely, the Republican letter left the way open for Netherlands concessions.

2. This letter was submitted on 26th April to Herremans as U.N.C.I. Chairman. Herremans gave a copy to Cochran who asked Hatta not to proceed with a formal statement of policy, but to continue informal talks. The letter has, therefore, been withdrawn.

3. The ensuing informal discussions were concerned with the two outstanding issues:

(a) the area to be restored to the Republican Government, and (b) the binding commitments required by the Netherlands regarding a cease-fire and a round table conference at The Hague.

Regarding the first of these issues, the Sultan of Djokjakarta came to Batavia to explain to Van Royen the importance of returning the Residency of Djokjakarta as the minimum area in which the Republic could accept responsibility for law and order.

4. Cochran and Van Royen convinced Hatta and the Sultan that the Netherlands Delegation was sincerely seeking a settlement, but was facing political difficulties, which were aggravated by the attitude of the Palace and the Army authorities in Indonesia.

Hatta and Van Royen eventually agreed to let Cochran assist them to find a formula to settle their differences. Hatta returned to Bangka on 29th April in order to terminate the informal talks.

5. On the same day, Cochran suggested to Roem and Van Royen the following statements:-

(a) Statement by Roem 'As Chairman of the Republican Delegation, I am authorised by the President Soekarno and Vice-President and Prime Minister Hatta to state that they give their personal assurances that they favour the issuance of an order to the Republican armed adherents to cease guerilla warfare and co-operate in the restoration of peace and the maintenance of law and order, and the acceptance of The Hague round-table conference invitation, as soon as possible after the restoration of the Government of the Republic of Indonesia to Djokjakarta, and will insist thereon to the Government so restored.' (b) Statement by Van Royen-

(1) The Netherlands Delegation is authorised to state that in view of the undertaking just announced by Dr. Roem, it agrees to return the Republican Government to Djokjakarta.

(2) The Netherlands Government agrees that Republican Government shall be free and facilitated to exercise its appropriate functions in an area; (alternative (a)); consisting of the city of Djokjakarta and its immediate environs and that this is an initial step towards the restoration of the Republican administration in the light of the Security Council's directive of 23rd March, 1949;

(alternative (b)); constituted by the Residency of Djokjakarta although such initial step in the restoration of the Republican administration in the light of the Security Council' directive of 23rd March, 1949 goes beyond the city of Djokjakarta and its immediate environs.

(3) The Netherlands Government agrees neither to the establishment of new Negaras or Daerahs on territory recognised as Republican under the Renville Agreement [6], nor to the expanding of Negaras and Djokjakarta at the expense of such Republican territory.

(4) The Netherlands Government favours the existence of the Republic as an entity to take its place in the United States of Indonesia. When a representative body for the whole of Indonesia is to be established and it consequently becomes necessary to determine the number of representatives from the Republic to the said body, there shall be a proportional representation for the Republic, in conformity with the strength of population of the Republican territory under the Renville agreement.' 6. The Republican Delegation has considered these drafts. After preliminary discussions with Van Royen, Roem has gone to Bangka today, May 2nd, for consultation with Hatta. He has taken with him the following suggestions of the Republican Delegation.

(a) Statement by Roem:-

'As Chairman of the Republican Delegation, I am authorised by Vice President Mohammed Hatta to give his personal assurance that he favours, in conformity with the Security Council's resolution of January 28th 1949 and its directive of March 23rd;

(i) the issuance of orders to the Republican armed adherents to cease guerilla warfare and to co-operate in the restoration of peace and the maintenance of law and order.

(ii) participate in a conference at The Hague with a view to the accelerating of the unconditional transfer of complete sovereignty to the U.S.I.;

(iii) The Vice President, Mahammed Hatta, undertakes that he will urge the adoption of such a policy by the Government of the Republic of Indonesia as soon as possible after its restoration at Djokjakarta.'

(b) Statement by the Netherlands Delegation :

(i) as in 5 (b) (ii) The Netherlands Government agrees that the Republican Government shall be free and facilitated to exercise its appropriate functions in an area constituted by the Residency (Daerah Istimewa) of Djokjakarta as the initial step in the restoration of the previous administration in the light of the Security Council's directive of 23rd March, 1949:

(iii) The Netherlands Government agrees to ensure the immediate discontinuance of all military operations and to release immediately and unconditionally all political prisoners arrested since 17th December, 1948, in the Republic of Indonesia:

(iv) The same as (3) in 5 (b) :

(v) The same as (4) in 5 (b) :

7. Roem will also probably propose two additional points for the Netherlands statement:-

(vi) The Netherlands Government agrees that Republican Civil Servants, Police, and Other Republican Organizations where still operating, shall continue to function:

(vii) The Netherlands Government agrees that areas under Republican control shall be permitted and assisted to trade with other areas in Indonesia, and with the outside world.

8. It may be some days before an eventual agreement or breakdown is made formal. Without missing this session, the Assembly debate on Indonesia should, therefore, be left as long as practicable.

9. Although Cochran has exerted an undue influence to keep the discussions informal and to press the Republicans to the concessions, the acceptance of his role by the Republicans is making criticism from here extremely difficult.

1 See note 3 to Document 369.

2 See Document 365.

3 Document 369.

4 Document 168.

5 See Document 312.

6 See Document 22, 23 and 24 in Volume XIII.

[AA : A1838, 854/10/4/3, v]