The United States Representative at the United Nations (Lodge) to the Department of State
Delga 253. Re Puerto Rican case in Plenary. Eight administering authorities plus Canada, Norway and Sweden met today at USDel request to discuss plenary tactics on Puerto Rican resolution. Group agreed almost certain ⅔ rule will apply and competence preambular paragraph will fail obtain ⅔ vote. USDel asked all members group for their affirmative votes on resolution without competence paragraph. Australia and UK at first sought group support to delete operative paragraphs 5 and 8, but finally agreed with US contention that we could not hold other delegations in line if these paragraphs were [Page 1467]deleted. On operative paragraph 8 the 4 delegations which abstained in committee four agreed to vote yes, and the 3 which voted no agreed to abstain, thus making possible a 2/3 majority on this paragraph if other delegations hold their voting positions. Subject to approval by their governments, which they agreed to seek promptly, all except Australia agreed to vote yes on resolution as a whole without competence preambular paragraph. Copland thought Australia might abstain rather than vote yes, but was not certain and will consult Canberra and let us know definitely. Ryckmans will ask Brussels for approval of yes vote with explanation after the vote to effect that Assembly has no competence.