Memorandum by the Secretary of State to the President
- Statement on United States Policy on Human Rights in the United Nations Commission on Human Rights.1
As you know, I have pointed out in my statement in the Senate hearings on the Bricker proposal that we do not feel that the United States should, in the present stage of international relations, consider the ratification of the Covenants on Human Rights now being drafted in the United Nations and that attention should be given in the United Nations to the furtherance of human rights through more effective ways than the proposed Covenants.
The United Nations Commission on Human Rights opens tomorrow—April 7—and it seems useful to us to utilize this opportunity for the issuance of a statement by you stressing positive United States support for the human rights goals of the United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This statement would be helpful in our information efforts abroad as well as in this country.
Accordingly I recommend that you issue the enclosed statement at noon on April 7.
The statement was proposed to the Secretary of State on Apr. 6, by the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs (McCardle), in a memorandum of Apr. 6, 1953 which read:
“As a follow-up of your statement today concerning the draft Covenants on Human Rights at the hearings on the Bricker proposal, it would be advisable to have the President issue the attached statement tomorrow to stress positive United States support for the human rights goals of the United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It would be useful to utilize the opening of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva tomorrow—April 7—for this purpose. This statement would be helpful in our information efforts abroad as well as in this country.” (340.1 AG/4–653)
The original of the instant memorandum was signed by Dulles on Apr. 7 and handcarried to the White House at 9: 30 a.m.↩
- Released by the White House at noon on Apr. 7, 1953, the text was transmitted to Mrs. Lord at Geneva in priority telegram 638, Apr. 7, 10:51 a.m. The telegram indicated that the Department assumed that Mrs. Lord was releasing the text of the Secretary of State’s letter to her of Apr. 3. These two documents and the text of Mrs. Lord’s statement before the Human Rights Commission on Apr. 8 (see infra) were issued on Apr. 9 by the Mission at the United Nations in Press Release No. 1688 (Mrs. Lord had released the text of the Secretary of State’s letter in Geneva on Apr. 7). All are printed in the Department of State Bulletin, Apr. 20, 1953, pp. 579–582 (“U.S. Policy on Human Rights”).↩