Minute of Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee of Cabinet

Canberra, 23 May 1963

DECISION No. 823 (FAD) SECRET

Without Memorandum-ANZUS Council Meeting-Wellington 5th-6th June, 1963

The Committee had for consideration a 'Note for Cabinet' circulated by the Minister for External Affairs.1

  1. The Committee noted the agenda for the ANZUS Council meeting.
  2. In relation to the two subjects, Portuguese Timor and Malaysia, specifically discussed in the Minister's note, the Committee reached the following conclusions:-

Portuguese Timor

The course suggested in the Minister's note, under which Australia would seek to engage the attention of the United Nations, was not regarded as acceptable-this notwithstanding the nature of the problem as summarised in the Minister's note, and notwithstanding also the situation that the United States (and Britain and New Zealand) looked to Australia to develop a detailed policy on the future of Portuguese Timor.

It was felt that at the ANZUS Council meeting the Minister for External Affairs might usefully refer to the approach which the Australian Government has made to Portugal, and to the letters which have passed on the Prime Minister to Prime Minister level, and indicate the Government's willingness to resume this correspondence, but beyond that, the Minister should say that Australia sees no action which it can take.

[matter omitted]

[NAA: A4940, C3797]