Department of External Affairs to Maloney

Cablegram 44 CANBERRA, 22 March 1945


Your telegrams 66 and 68. [1]

Position as disclosed by you is disturbing. Pending the outcome of direct approach to Stalin on United States behalf, however, it seems best that you should continue to use all means open to yourself to impress on the Soviet authorities the deep concern of the Australian Government for the welfare and safety of Australians liberated from German prison camps and its expectation that the Soviet Government will fulfil in all respects the terms of the agreement reached at Yalta and the undertakings given to you. You might express to Molotoff our serious anxiety as to the effect on public opinion if it were established that there was any avoidable neglect by the various Soviet authorities in connection with Australian ex-prisoners.

2. Meanwhile it is proposed to speak to the Soviet Charge d’Affaires [2] here in similar terms.

3. Your full reporting on this problem has been most helpful and we will appreciate any further information you are able to send.


1 Dispatched 19 March. They reported delays in processing of liberated Allied prisoners of war by Soviet authorities and the existence of groups or Allied personnel still located in Poland and awaiting repatriation. Maloney also noted that the U.S.

Ambassador, W. Averell Harriman, had expressed doubts concerning an approach to Stalin by the Australian, N.Z. and U.K. prime ministers as this might prejudice the outcome of Roosevelt’s direct approach to Stalin on the matter. On file AA:A1066, E45/33/22.

2 A. A. Soldatov.


[AA:A1066, E45/33/22]