Supriya Ghosh

1944 Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference

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Cities  United Kingdom
Precedes  1946
Heads of Government  6
1944 Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference
Dates  1 May 1944– 16 May 1944
Chair  Winston Churchill (Prime Minister)
Follows  1937 Imperial Conference

The 1944 Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference was the first Meeting of the Heads of Government of the Commonwealth of Nations. It was held in the United Kingdom, between 1–16 May 1944, and was hosted by that country's Prime Minister, Winston Churchill.

The conference was attended by the Prime Ministers of all of the Dominions within the Commonwealth except Ireland. Attendees included Prime Minister John Curtin of Australia, Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King of Canada, Prime Minister Peter Fraser of New Zealand and Prime Minister Jan Smuts of South Africa. Also attending was Prime Minister Sir Godfrey Huggins of the self-governing colony of Southern Rhodesia, and representing India was The Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir. Members of the Churchill War Cabinet and the High Commissioners of the Dominions also attended.

Ireland did not participate although at the time the British Commonwealth still regarded Ireland as one of its members. Ireland had not participated in any equivalent conferences since 1932.

The British Commonwealth leaders agreed to support the Moscow Declaration and reached agreement regarding their respective roles in the overall Allied war effort.

Prior to the conference, Robert McIntyre and Douglas Young, the leaders of the Scottish National Party, lobbied King, Fraser, Smuts, Huggins, and Curtin, asking them to raise the issue of Scottish independence at the conference and to invite Scotland to take part in it and all future Commonwealth Conferences. Curtin viewed it as an internal matter for the British government, King was sympathetic, and the remainder simply voiced their acknowledgement of the communiques.

Military

  • UK Sir John Stephenson
  • Dominions
  • CAN Norman Robertson
  • UK Sir Richard Hopkins Permanent Secretary to the Treasury
  • AUS Sir Frederick Shedden Secretary, Department of Defence
  • AUS General Sir Thomas Blamey
  • UK Lieutenant-general Sir Hastings Ismay
  • NZL Lieutenant-general Edward Puttick
  • References

    1944 Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference Wikipedia


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