476 Critchley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram C3 THE HAGUE, 20 August 1949, 4.45 p.m.


Rules of procedure [1] for the Round Table Conference have been informally agreed upon and will be approved at the opening session of the Conference on Tuesday.

2. The final text will be airmailed. The main points are- (a) Chairmanship.

Prime Minister Drees will open the Conference and preside at the final meetings. In the intervening period chairmanship of each plenary session will rotate between three Deputy chairmen, Hatta, Hamid, and Van Maarseveen in that order.

(b) Steering Committee.

The Steering Committee will be the control committee of the conference. It will control the work of the committees, publicity and procedure. The chairmanship of the steering committee shall be held in turn for periods of one week by the head of each delegation or in the latter's absence by his deputy.

(c) Committees.

Committees shall immediately be established to deal with- (i) Political and Constitutional questions, (ii) Financial and Economic questions, (iii) Military questions, (iv) Civil questions, (v) Social questions.

(d) Minorities, etc.

Representatives of Minorities shall be admitted to plenary and committee meetings if one of the delegations so request. The chairman shall afford these representatives an opportunity to express their views with regard to such matters as are deemed by the Steering Committee to concern their interests.

Representatives of other significant interests may be admitted to the plenary and committee meetings to express their views on matters deemed to concern their interests upon recommendations of the steering committee.

(e) Languages.

Netherlands and Indonesian texts of all documents shall be considered equally authentic. In case of differences of interpretation the English text shall be considered as decisive.

(f) Position of the U.N.C.I.

The U.N.C.I. will participate in the Round Table Conference in accordance with items terms of reference as established by the Security Council.

Plenary meetings and meetings of the Steering Committee shall be held with the U.N.C.I. According to circumstances U.N.C.I. may also participate in conformity with its terms of reference in other meetings.

(g) Voting.

All decisions on matters of procedure will be taken by unanimous vote. In the event of disagreement U.N.C.I. shall undertake to mediate. Decisions in committees on subjects under consideration shall only be taken after agreement has been reached between the Delegations.

1 The text of the 'Rules of Procedure for the Round Table Conference' is given in United Nations, Security Council Official Records, Fourth Year, Special Supplement No. 6, pp.39-46.

[AA : A1838, 403/2/2/2, viii]