Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume III
247 — The Prime Minister of New Zealand to the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs2
The Prime Minister of New Zealand to the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs2
With reference to your telegram of 3 February on the defence of Tonga, His Majesty's Government in New Zealand will despatch at the earliest opportunity the key personnel and such of the equipment for the land forces as has already been agreed to.3
2. With regard to paragraph 2 of your telegram, the New Zealand Army Liaison Officer in London can supply a list of equipment and stores which it is possible to despatch immediately. The remaining equipment for the land forces asked for by the British Consul and Agent cannot be made immediately available, but all steps will now be taken to explore the possibility of securing the outstanding items, which were only omitted because they were not available in New Zealand. page 278 A list of these items can also be supplied by the New Zealand Army Liaison Officer. His Majesty's Government in New Zealand will be grateful to learn whether His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom could supply any of these items, as supply from Australia, if possible, would prejudice supply from that source of New Zealand's needs, which are fairly acute. Approval has been given to the supply to Tonga of six teleradio sets and eleven telescopes, as asked for by the British Consul and Agent, and these will be sent as and when available.
3. The New Zealand Chiefs of Staff do not consider Tonga of sufficient strategic importance to justify the mounting of 6-inch guns there.
4. His Majesty's Government in New Zealand warmly appreciate the offer made by the Tongan Government to make some financial contribution to the defence of their own territory.
2 Repeated to the High Commissioner for the Western Pacific.
3 In a telegram to the Dominions Secretary on 18 February the Prime Minister advised that these men and stores would sail that day.