439 Cablegram to Canberra

Jakarta, 8 April 1976


East Timor

Tjan has told us that the PGET will invite members of the Security Council, the Committee of Twenty-Four, Winspeare and most probably Ambassadors in Jakarta from 'ASEAN plus' countries (at least) to observe the planned meeting in Dili (stage one of the procedure outlined in JA54151).

  1. The same group would also be invited to observe the debate in the Parliament in Jakarta and the Indonesian mission to East Timor to verify the wishes of the people (stages two and four of the procedure). These invitations would not be issued until the appropriate time.
  2. If the invitations were not accepted Tjan said, Indonesia would be able to say to its critics that an opportunity had been given to the international community to observe the act of self­-determination.
  3. Asked whether international observation of the selection of district representatives to the Dili meeting would be sought, Tjan said that process was almost complete. There had been some slippage in the proposed timetable but it was still intended to complete the process by 17 August.
  4. Tjan gave two reasons for the apparent haste. First, there was a desperate need for money in East Timor. Until East Timor became properly a part of Indonesia it was very difficult to provide funds through the Indonesian budget for expenditure there. Secondly, when East Timor was integrated Indonesia could answer any international criticism of what happened in East Timor by claiming it was an internal matter.
  5. Asked about Indonesia's reaction if some countries (and the United Nations) did not accept the integration, Tjan said that these countries recognised Indonesia and East Timor would be part of Indonesia. In time this question would not be a problem.

[NAA: A10005, TS202/111, ANNEX 3]