264 Mackay to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 202, NEW DELHI, 17 May 1948, 4.40 p.m.

SECRET

The Indian Government have approached us regarding the establishment of the regional organisation of the World Health Organisation which will come up for discussion before the first session of the Organisation commencing at Geneva on June 24th.

2. After expressing their keen interest in the establishment of a regional organisation in India to serve India, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Burma, Ceylon, Siam, Malaya, Singapore, Netherlands East Indies, Indonesia, Nepal 'and the other countries in the same area', the Indian Government asks that we take up the Indian proposal with the Australian Government with a view to enlisting your support. It is understood that you are also being approached through the Indian High Commissioner in Canberra.

3. An aide-memoire covering the above requests[1] major functions of the regional organisation as these are outlined in Article 50 of World Health Organisation Constitution and expressed the Indian Government's views that these objectives will be best served so far as this area is concerned, by the location of the regional organisation in India, which the note describes as the largest single unit in the region.

4. Aide-memoire claims that the Indian proposal is not intended to interfere with the working of the Health Bureau at Singapore or to reduce its utility as an epidemiological centre.

5. We should appreciate your instructions as to reply to be sent to the Indian Government.

[1] A symbol here indicates word[s] 'mutilated'.

[AA : A1838, 362/1/2]