Memorandum of Conversation, by the United Nations Adviser, Bureau of European Affairs (Allen)

  • Subject:
  • Chinese Representation

In the course of a tour d’horizon of UN problems, Miss Salt recalled that the US–UK moratorium arrangement as embodied in the resolution of the 8th GA on this subject expires at the end of the year. Although no instructions have been received from the UK Foreign Office, the UK Delegation in New York suggested that the Embassy in Washington raise the problem with us. I stated that with respect to the forthcoming ECAFE meetings, which will be the first meetings of UN bodies in 1954 at which the question is likely to arise, we had already sent a circular instruction to friendly members, including the UK, proposing that the procedure previously followed again be adhered to. If the question should arise in one of the two ECAFE committees, we would take the position that it is out of order; if it should arise in the Commission itself, we would initiate or support a motion to adjourn debate for the duration of the session. Miss Salt did not indicate that she expected there would be any difficulty in the UK going along with this procedure, but preferred to withhold official comment until word from London.

On the general problem I stated it is our desire that the moratorium arrangement should be continued indefinitely. I pointed out that in our view there had been no development which would warrant any more relaxed attitude on the part of either government. I stated we had under consideration the possibility of making a high level approach to the British Government on this matter in the near future.

Miss Salt inquired specifically as to whether this continuation of the arrangement would apply to the forthcoming session of the TC and any resumed session of the GA. When I replied in the affirmative she sought to explore an appropriate type of wording for the motion to be introduced at the outset of any resumed session of the GA. I suggested that the simplest would be a motion to postpone consideration of the question “for the duration of the session”. Miss Salt speculated that since the 8th GA did not terminate in December as originally [Page 716] planned and now is likely to resume its session in February, it is very likely that at the conclusion of that portion the Assembly will again simply recess rather than adjourn. She felt therefore that a formula to postpone the question “for the duration of the session” would probably not prove acceptable to the UK Government. She suggested instead language along the following lines: “The GA decides to postpone consideration of this question until the termination or until the next recess of the 8th session of the GA”. I commented that if the probable resumed session did not adjourn but again recessed until later in the spring or summer, the only reasons for which it would again reconvene would be reasons connected with the refusal of the Chinese Communists to hold a political conference on any reasonable basis or a deadlock at the conference due to their intransigence. In either case the circumstances would be such that the US would continue to be opposed to any change in representation in the UN, and assumed the UK would likewise. It seemed to me therefore that the preferable course would be to postpone discussion for the duration of the 8th Session.