93 Department of External Affairs to Evatt

Cablegram E17 CANBERRA, 16 January 1949

IMMEDIATE CONFIDENTIAL

INDONESIA

Americans did not in fact submit resolution [1] to Council yesterday and according to Hood are still undecided whether to do so Monday. They do not want another abortive resolution and at same time they do not want to be party to some compromise which will put Republic in worse position than it is now.

Hood has telegraphed lengthy U.S. draft resolution on lines foreshadowed in Working Paper. [2] Main objection to it appears to be that it calls upon parties to resume negotiations on basis of Cochran proposals [3] under auspices of United Nations Commission and to reach agreement to enable establishment of Interim Federal Government not later than 15th March. If no agreement reached by 1st March Commission to submit to Security Council its own recommendations for settlement. As we have pointed out to Hood, this would simply mean returning to position as it stood before police action, and there is no reason to hope that resumption of negotiations would help Republic to secure settlement on reasonable terms. Only satisfactory course at this stage would seem to be for Council itself to lay down terms of settlement.

Difficulty is to draw up satisfactory terms at short notice for incorporation in pending resolution. Solution might be for Council to give its Commission three weeks in which to draw up just and workable settlement (working by majority vote and consulting the parties as necessary) and present it to Council which could then endorse and promulgate it.

As regards withdrawal of Dutch troops, United States draft resolution provides for withdrawal by stages under supervision of United Nations Commission. Hood reports that Republican delegates in New York are now opposed to immediate withdrawal, which would saddle Republic with serious administrative difficulties and invite chaos.

At Friday's Security Council meeting, following Van Royen's statement, Cadogan found Dutch statement of plans 're-assuring' while Hood described them as misleading and as altogether ignoring Republic. [4] He used eyewitness reports of conditions in Republic to refute Dutch claims that there is little guerilla activity and to show that Dutch are distributing food and clothing only to Indonesians who helped them.

McIntyre will be in Melbourne to-morrow with latest cables and for consultation if necessary.

1 See Document 86.

2 See Document 85.

3 See Document 237 and 238 in Volume XIII.

4 See Document 92.

[AA : A1838, 403/3/1/1, xx]