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234 Officer to Evatt

Cablegram 44 NANKING, 27 January 1949, 10.50 p.m.


Reference my telegram 43. [1]

I think that we are now at the most critical period here, when a
very few days will decide whether there is to be peace by
negotiations, or whether Communists are to over-run China and
overturn, eventually, a rump Government at Canton. The latter
situation would present all of us with problems of recognition, or
non-recognition, whereas the former would avoid any rupture with
the existing relations.

2. Though I thought that the attempt to secure four power good
offices was ill-advised, I have felt that the moment would come
when a word outside might tip the scales. Now is, in my opinion,
the moment when a little encouragement to the Acting President,
and slight pressure on the Communists, might secure [still peace]
[2] by agreement. There is time still for Acting President to
decide to remain here and press negotiations and for Communists to
be more forthcoming.

3. In the circumstances would you, as President of the Assembly of
the United Nations consider making a statement to the effect that
[you have noted] that both sides have expressed their readiness to
commence negotiations that you hope they will commence them
without delay and so bring about peace inside one of permanent
members of the Security Council and that both sides will refrain
from any unnecessary or harsh demands and make every effort to
reach agreement.

4. The statement, on the other hand, needs to be carefully worded
so as to avoid any possible suggestion of interference in China's
internal affairs.

5. If you do decide to make it I would be glad of prior advice so
that I could inform my United States and United Kingdom

1 Dispatched 27 January, it reported that the situation had
changed and the chance of negotiation lessened.

2 Words in square brackets inserted from copy on file

Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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