Editorial Note

John D. Hickerson, Assistant Secretary of State for United Nations Affairs, was to head the United States group at the bilateral talks on colonial policy in London and Paris, October 1951, but was prevented from attending just before departure. Mr. William Sanders, Special Assistant to Assistant Secretary Hickerson, was designated to replace Hickerson. Other members of the group were Mr. Ward P. Allen, Adviser on United Nations Affairs, Bureau of European Affairs, and Mr. O. Benjamin Gerig, Director of the Office of Dependent Area Affairs. Detailed from their respective Embassies were Miss Margaret Joy Tibbetts (for the London talks) and Mr. John E. Utter (for the Paris talks). Gerig proceeded to London from Geneva where he was attending [Page 651] the meeting of the Special Committee on Information Transmitted under Article 73 (e) of the Charter of the United Nations.

The talks with the British at London were held from October 10 (afternoon) to October 12 (morning). The principal officers engaged on the British side were, from the Foreign Office, Messrs. Paul Mason, Superintending Under Secretary, and C. C. Parrott, Head of the United Nations (Political) Department; from the Commonwealth Relations Office, Mr. Neil Pritchard, Superintending Under Secretary; and from the Colonial Office, Messrs. John Martin and Andrew Cohen, Assistant Under Secretaries of State. Messrs. P. C. Hope and D. I. Dunnett also attended from the Foreign Office; and there was a supporting element of eight officers from the Commonwealth Relations and Colonial Offices. Mr. J. K. Thompson, Colonial Attaché at the British Embassy, Washington, was also present. Mr. Ernest Davies, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Foreign Office, opened the conference and presided the first day.

The colonial policy talks with the French Government were held in Paris on October 15 and 16. M. Leon Pignon, Representative of France on the United Nations Trusteeship Council, presided. Delegates attending from the French Foreign Ministry were: M. André Naudy (Ministry Delegate to the United Nations), M. Jean-Daniel Jurgensen (Africa Division), M. Pierre Salade (Far Eastern Department) and M. Jules (?) Charles-Roux (Caribbean Department). M. Kresser represented the Ministry of Overseas France.

A summary report on the London and Paris talks by William Sanders, dated December 7, 1951, is printed infra. The United States Minutes for the British talks (in brief form and not “agreed” minutes) are located in Department of State file 741.022/10–1851, under cover of London despatch 1826, October 18, 1951. The United States Minutes for the French talks are located in Department of State Office Lot File 62 D 228 (ODA Files), “Colonial Policy Talks UK and France–1951”, as part of Tab A of the Sanders Report of December 7. (Tab A also included a set of the minutes of the British talks.)

The London Embassy despatch forwarding the London minutes (No. 1826, October 18) emphasized that the British participants regarded the discussions to be of very considerable value. It was noted that the Colonial Office participants had been most frank. The Foreign Office had reiterated its belief to the Embassy that only through such conversations could the Colonial Office be assured of the value of a less legalistic and more flexible approach to dependent area questions in the United Nations. The London Embassy stated that “unquestionably” the morale of the Colonial Office had been raised “by the evidence of a friendly United States interest in these problems.” (741.022/10–1851)