350/5–354: Telegram

The Deputy United States Representative at the United Nations (Wadsworth) to the Department of State

official use only

685. Petition regarding Trusteeship Territory of Pacific Islands. Hall saw Bunche this afternoon at latter’s request. Bunche furnished copy Marshallese petition (separately transmitted in telegram 686) and following proposed note prepared by Security Council Affairs Department Secretariat:

“In accordance with paragraph three of the Resolution of March 7, 1949 of the Security Council (S/1280) and Resolution 46 (IV) of March 24, 1949 of the Trusteeship Council, the Security Council should be advised of the receipt by the Secretary General of all reports and [Page 1479] petitions received from, or relating to, strategic areas under trusteeship.

In pursuance of the terms of the above noted Resolutions, the Secretary General has the honor to inform the members of the Security Council that the petition from the Marshallese people concerning the explosion of lethal weapons within their home islands has been received and that copies of this petition have been transmitted to the Trusteeship Council for examination and report to the Security Council.”

Bunche expressed concern that handling this petition as proposed by Security Council Affairs Department would provide basis for Soviet intervention Security Council, and expressed personal preference for handling petition same basis as other petitions concerning the Pacific Islands. He cited T/PET, 10/27, petition from Martin R. Haase, as example of normal treatment such petitions.

Bunche also expressed view that petition semed to be more professional in form and language than those usually received from residents trusteeship territories and expressed concern that petition might be Communist inspired. He showed Hall original petition, which he stated was received by mail direct from Marshall Islands. Petition well typed with two erasures, one corrected in ink, one in typed script. Signatures appeared authentic and included Marshallese officials in islands in addition to Mrs. Dorothy Kbua.

Bunche requested urgent advice as to preferred treatment petition by United States. Hall advised Bunche he would check this point specifically with the Department and advise him definitively [sic] Tuesday, May 4. Hall expressed tentative view that Special Security Council note should be voided. Similar view then expressed to Security Council Affairs Department by USUN.

Please advise soonest preferred course of action in handling petition.