Department of External Affairs to Eastman

Cablegram 25 CANBERRA, 21 December 1945



Your 42. [1]

We agree that it would be desirable to issue simultaneous release in Canberra, Bangkok and Singapore of terms of Australian letters with covering statements at same time as release regarding British formal agreement.

Covering statement on following lines. Begins.

‘The Australian Government has been concerning itself with question of a settlement with Siam against whom it declared war on 2nd March, 1942. Preliminary letters of agreement have been exchanged. In these letters Siam undertakes in return for the termination of the state of war at an early date to make full recompense for the sufferings, misfortunes and losses inflicted upon Australian citizens and interests in Siam as a result of the action of the Siamese Government which entered into an alliance with Japan on 21st December, 1941 and declared war on Great Britain on 25th January, 1942. Other objectives assured by Siam as an earnest of its good faith were the apprehension of war criminals and the tending of the war graves of Australians who perished there. Siam pledges itself also to participate in regional security arrangements in South East Asia under the provisions of the United Nations Charter. Australia looks forward to the re-establishment of friendly relations with an independent Siamese Government devoted to the principles of the United Nations.’ Ends.

We are considering your comment regarding termination of state of war [2] at an early date after the signing of the letter of agreements. [3]


1 Dispatched 20 December. On file AA : A1838/2, 451/3/2/2, i.

2 The U.K. Govt intended to terminate the state of war between the two parties on the signature of the formal agreement. Eastman suggested that it would be anomalous if the state of war with Australia continued for several further weeks while the Siamese- Australian Treaty was ratified by parliament.

3 The agreements with the United Kingdom and India were signed in Singapore on 1 January 1946. On the same day preliminary letters of agreement were exchanged between Eastman and the Siamese representatives, and the treaty of peace itself was signed in Bangkok on 3 April 1946. A copy of the Siamese-Australian peace treaty is on file AA : A1838/2, 453/9/5/1.


[AA : A1838/2, 381/1/2/1, i]