320.22/8–254: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in Greece1


278. Your replies CA–7624 cirtel 36 to Latin America2 were generally favorable and US appreciation should be expressed to government. However after reviewing other replies and discussing procedures with UK who is also vitally interested moving ahead we are modifying program slightly. We contemplate two agenda items rather than one.

We estimate considerable interest discussion substance ILC draft articles continental shelf and their adoption substantially present form Ninth GA. Reluctance discuss substance fisheries articles because multitude technical problems left unsolved in ILC draft articles. However we think present general discussion looking toward future solution these problems by technical as well legal experts may prove welcome. Believe general discussion second committee Ninth GA with emphasis procedural aspects would result agreement have problems considered by special international conference and/or FAO.

Therefore if there is sufficient support US and UK and any others who will cosponsor Intend put following two items on supplementary list: “Consideration ILC Draft Articles on Continental Shelf” in sixth committee and “Economic Development Fisheries and Question Fishery Conservation and Regulation” in second committee.

Unless objection perceived Embassy should immediately approach Foreign Office outline above plan stressing different treatment shelf and fishery questions and ascertain definitive answer as possible from Government following questions relating action ninth GA: (1) Willingness vote favor inclusion on final agenda one or both items proposed above if vote taken in GA; (2) Willingness vote favor articles continental shelf substantially as drafted by ILC; (3) Willingness discuss general fisheries problems second committee with view arranging substantive discussion appropriate international body later date; and (4) At Embassy’s discretion, willingness cosponsor one or both agenda items as worded above. If firm commitment [Page 1716] cosponsor can be obtained government should be requested inform their mission New York of cosponsorship and our intention discuss with them text agreeable explanatory memorandum which must accompany each agenda item submitted. Dutch Government should be informed that number sponsors unknown but probably at least ten on shelf item.

Replies should reach Department by telegram if necessary prior August 13 since items must be inscribed on supplementary list prior August 22.

  1. Sent also to Beirut, Bogota, Ciudad Trujillo, The Hague, La Paz, Managua, Monrovia, Rio de Janeiro, Taipei, and Tehran for action and repeated to London and New York for information.
  2. Circular airgram 7624, June 25, 1954, p. 1697; circular telegram 36 is not printed, but see footnote 5, p. 1701.