438 Department of External Affairs to Quinn

Cablegram 41 CANBERRA, 17 June 1949, 12.20 p.m.



We have heard from London that a Netherlands official has mentioned to the Foreign Office that The Hague conference is not expected to start before September. The official was told that in the United Kingdom view this was too late and that conference should begin in August at the latest and should not coincide with the Assembly.

You should see Boon and tell him that we are disturbed at this report, which suggests that Netherlands authorities may again be contriving delays. On our reports from Batavia progress in the current negotiations on the restoration of the Republican Government is satisfactory, if somewhat slow, and we do not see why the Dutch should not be able to set a date for The Hague Conference some time in July if they are as sincere as they now profess to be in wanting an early settlement. Their objective should be to have something positive to show to the General Assembly, which is likely to be hostile if there is still no settlement in sight.

[AA : A1838, 401/3/1/1, vi]