IO Files

Minutes of Fortieth Meeting of the United States Delegation to the General Assembly, Paris, January 5, 1952


[Here follow list of persons (35) present and discussion of two prior agenda items.]

3. Indians in South Africa

Mr. Stein reported on the recent word from the Department on this item and the 5-Power resolution contained in Gadel 594. The Department proposed that the Delegation modify its decision on the voting by paragraphs on this resolution as follows:

abstain on the second preambular paragraph. (Since the United States had voted against the General Assembly resolution referred to in that paragraph, we should abstain on references to it.)
vote against the last paragraph of the resolution which called for automatic consideration of the item by the Seventh Session. Otherwise the Delegation should vote in favor of the resolution as a whole. Mr. Stein suggested that the Delegation adopt the Department’s ideas. Miss Strauss, he said, could explain the United States views in regard [Page 863] to the last paragraph. In fact, any member could place this matter on the agenda anyway. Should the possible mediatory efforts of the Secretary-General hold a chance of success, it would be unwise to have the item fail automatically on the agenda and run the risk of disrupting such a chance. Mr. Stein reiterated his suggestion that the Delegation support the proposed modifications.

Miss Strauss agreed in general with the Department’s position but regretted having to vote against the last paragraph since she thought the South Africans might feel the United States was not taking a serious interest in this matter. In general, she said, she could not favor the automatic placing of items on the agenda. There were special reasons for her position in this particular case however.

Mr. Allen wondered if there were still time to try to get the last paragraph changed to the effect that the Secretary General would report to the Members on whether his special position in the matter gave him reason to believe the question should be included in the agenda or not. Miss Strauss liked this idea but pointed out the difficulty of obtaining sponsors for such an amendment. Mrs. Roosevelt doubted that there would be sufficient time to attempt such a move. Miss Strauss asked if the Delegation would approve of her seeking to have some other delegation put in an amendment to this effect, on the “off-chance” that she could persuade someone to do it. Mr. Stein said that the Department’s instructions indicated they would not object. Mrs. Roosevelt said that she heard no objections to this course. The vote would be according to the new instructions.

[Here follows discussion of another matter.]

Charles D. Cook