IO Files: US/A/M (Chr)/164

Minutes of the Twenty-ninth Meeting of the United States Delegation to the General Assembly, New York, October 30, 1950, 9:15 a. m.


[Here follow list of persons present (45) and discussion of a prior agenda item.]

2. The case of the issuance of a visa to Mr. Fischer, a representative of the WFTU .

Mr. Lubin called the attention of the Delegation to the case of Mr. Fischer, a representative of the WFTU, who desired to attend the present Economic and Social Council sessions, in his capacity as a representative of a non-governmental organization. The State Department had not instructed the Embassy in Paris as yet to give him a visa. As a result of the delay, the Economic and Social Council had passed a resolution sponsored by France, Mexico and Poland, the provisions of which Mr. Lubin proceeded to summarize.1 The resolution [Page 78] was extremely critical of the United States, and Mr. Lubin thought that the Soviet delegate, Mr. Arutiunian, had made a real impression on the Council. The Council itself felt that some action should be taken, and the United States was left in the unfortunate position of being accused of stalling so long that the Economic and Social Council would have adjourned before Mr. Fischer received his visa. Mr. McKeever referred to a similar problem which had arisen from a resolution passed unanimously by the United Nations Correspondents Association regarding United States visa policy as applied to members of the Secretariat and to a Polish correspondent.

Mr. Cohen thought it might be helpful if the Delegation could inform the Department of its view that it would be valuable if a high official of the Department of Justice could come to New York to learn at close range the problems involved in connection with visa matters in the United Nations. Mr. Tate reported that the Fischer case was presently before the Attorney-General, and it was hoped that a decision might be gotten today. The problem was one of proper interpretation of the Headquarters Agreement and the effect of the McCarran Act. He believed that this matter deserved further consideration and noted that Mr. Fisher, the Legal Adviser of the State Department, was planning to visit New York in the near future, and would be glad to discuss this matter with the Delegation.2

[Here follows Delegation consideration of other agenda items.]

  1. The United States Mission had reported urgently to the Department on this resolution in a niact telegram on October 28 (USUN 747, 6:27 p. m.). The essential part of the resolution requested the Secretary General

    “… To have prepared as soon as possible and before the end of this session of the Council, a report on the implications of the legislation and administrative measures recently adopted in the United States governing the admission of aliens with respect to the application of the headquarters agreement concerning the admission of experts or representatives of non-governmental organizations enjoying consultative status.…”

    The Mission pressed for prompt favorable disposition of the case and hoped for early assurances regarding future treatment of such aliens under the Headquarters Agreement.
  2. The Attorney General of the United States invoked Ninth Proviso procedure in this case, and the Embassy in France was so informed in Department telegram 2272, October 30, 4 p. m. Fischer arrived in New York from Paris on November 6 and was in the United States until November 26.