890.114 Narcotics/58

The Secretary of State to the Netherlands Ambassador (Loudon)

Excellency: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note No. 372 of January 18, 1944 in regard to the measures to be taken to prohibit the non-medical use of narcotic drugs in areas in the Far East now occupied by Japanese forces when such areas are reoccupied by the armed forces of the United Nations.

It is gratifying to learn that the Netherlands Government finds fully acceptable the common course of action described in the Department’s aide-mémoire of September 21, 1943. The comments and suggestions of your Government concerning the proposed instructions to the military authorities are valuable and are appreciated. As it is envisaged that the interested Governments will issue similar orders to their respective military authorities, the Department believes that it will be advisable to await the replies of the British, Chinese and Portuguese Governments to its aide-mémoire of September 21, 1943 and that after receipt of these replies representatives of the interested Governments should be designated to meet in Washington in order to consider all comments and suggestions which may be presented for the revision of the proposed instructions. In the meantime your note will be brought to the attention of the War, Navy and Treasury Departments of this Government.

In view of the declaration of the Netherlands Government of October 1, 1943, copies of which were attached to your note, this Government agrees with the Netherlands Government’s observations that there is no occasion for making any further public announcement relative to the prohibition of prepared opium in the Netherlands Indies. The observations of the Netherlands Government on this subject disclose that the policy of the Netherlands relating to prepared opium is closely in harmony with that of the United States.

This Government is aware that the combined efforts of many countries will be required in order to make the prohibition of smoking opium effective, and hopes to be able to exchange views during the current year with the Netherlands Government concerning the main principles on which a poppy limitation convention may be based.

Accept [etc.]

For the Secretary of State:
A. A. Berle, Jr.