ADMISSION OF NEW MEMBERS TO THE UNITED NATIONS
Volume #21 - 4.|
NATIONS UNIES ET AUTRES ORGANISATIONS INTERNATIONALES
QUESTIONS PRÉSENTÉES À LA DIXIÈME SESSION DE L`ASSEMBLÉE GÉNÉRALE
ADMISSION DE NOUVEAUX MEMBRES
Note du sous-secrétaire d'État aux Affaires extérieures|
pour le secrétaire d'État aux Affaires extérieures
le 5 août 1955|
ADMISSION OF NEW MEMBERS TO THE UNITED NATIONS
The attached telegram No. 501 of July 28, 1955? from New Delhi confirms a report that Premier Bulganin had told Mr. Nehru during the latter's recent visit to Moscow that the Soviet Union would support the admission to the United Nations of all 17 qualified states which wished to enter (i.e. Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Ceylon, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Laos, Libya, Nepal, Outer Mongolia, Portugal and Rumania). It was agreed that partitioned Korea and Vietnam should not be admitted until they have been re-unified. The admission of Communist China was regarded as being an entirely separate question.
The Russian and Indian position thus coincides with the views which you have expressed on this subject before the External Affairs Committee20 (and confirmed in tel. No. 1129 of July 12, 1955? to the High Commissioner in London which is attached for convenient reference) and with the general views expressed by many of the smaller powers at Bandung21 and at the United Nations Commemoration Meetings at San Francisco. 22 Thus, the question of the admission of all outstanding applicants for membership is almost certain to be raised at the next session of the General Assembly and seems assured of receiving widespread support, especially from the members who participated in the Bandung Conference, from the Communist and Scandinavian members and from Yugoslavia. To date, the emphasis has been placed on the desirability of "opening the gates" by any means, rather than on any specific formula (such as a "package deal") for achieving this end.
The attitude of the United States, United Kingdom and France appears to differ. Shortly before the recent San Francisco meeting, these three powers reaffirmed their consistent opposition to any form of "package deal", which in any case they believe to be precluded by the 1948 advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice. In their view, all outstanding candidatures should come up and be voted on individually and on their respective merits. If individual candidatures were raised in the Security Council in the chronological order of their applications, the United States, United Kingdom and France stated that Albania (and presumably the other Soviet candidates) would probably fail at the outset. The Soviet satellites have been rejected in the past on the grounds that they did not possess a "peace-loving" character and were not "able and willing" to carry out the Charter obligations.
The real difference in the two approaches is that the Western Big Three are interpreting the entrance requirements of Article 4 in a legalistic manner whereas we are urging a liberal interpretation of the "peace-loving" aspect. When you expressed the view that "the time has come when we should accept all these applications for membership which are now before the United Nations" this did not overlook article 4 but rather urged a broad interpretation of it and implied a willingness to accept the good faith of any state which desires entrance, regardless of its ideology or past misconduct.
We are not however, urging a loose interpretation of the other, more precise qualification, statehood. Universal membership would not include Germany, Korea and Vietnam at present because they are not unified, sovereign states. Nor does universality imply that non-member states would be coerced into membership in the absence of any application to join (as in the case of Spain and Switzerland); it simply means that membership is universally open to all sovereign states which wish to join and accept the obligations of membership. However, even the qualification of statehood would have to be interpreted liberally if we acquiesced in the admission of Outer Mongolia; but this seems a small price to pay, if it proves to be necessary to gain Soviet co-operation. In this connection, we might keep in mind the precedent of India being admitted as an original member of the United Nations at a time when its status as an independent state was open to question.
Results of the Admission of New Members
The following results could reasonably be expected if the admission of all 17 applicants were approved in the Security Council and General Assembly.
(1) There would be a further easing of East-West tensions. An old bone of contention would have been removed and a further example of the possibility of real East-West collaboration would have been exhibited;
(2) The prestige of the United Nations would be raised as it would validate the organization's claim to be a true world organization and the one forum where substantially all national views can be heard and discussed;
(3) It might well create a favourable atmosphere for the eventual admission of the Peking Government because the admission of all applicant states would (a) ease East-West tensions, (b) establish the precedent of admitting states regardless of their present ideologies and past conduct and (c) point up the anomaly of excluding one of the most important states from a world organization;
(4) After having set the precedent of interpreting article 4 liberally and favouring the principle of universal membership of sovereign states, the eventual easy entry of Spain, unified Germany, Korea and Vietnam, and any colonial states achieving independence should be much more probable;
(5) There would be a change in the balance of voting in the Assembly: the Soviet bloc would gain 5 votes; the neutralists would gain 3 or 4; the Arabs 2; and the West 6 or 7 including the two most important members, Italy and Japan. The relative importance of the Latin American bloc would decline. Pressure for a re-appraisal of the allocation of the seats and possibly for increased membership in the Security Council would also result.
As a result of the foregoing considerations it is recommended, if you agree, that:
(1) We enquire as to the views of the Western Big Three on the admission of new members and as to any plans they may have for breaking the deadlock on membership. If they have none, we might urge a more positive approach in this field possibly through the Western Big Three attempting to reach a prior understanding with Russia on the admission of all outstanding applicants. 23 We might point out that: (a) this can be viewed not as a "package deal" but as a workable scheme to achieve the admission of all outstanding applications; and (b) each applicant could be voted on individually but with a prior Gentlemen's Agreement that all would be admitted. It might be indicated at the same time, that we view this question as an important one which has a reasonable chance of being resolved satisfactorily during the present period of détente. 24 Our desire to consult with the Big Three and to consider any of their proposals should be stressed but it should be brought out also that you are virtually committed to supporting the admission of all membership applicants except North and South Korea and North and South Vietnam.
While working within this general framework we could adopt either one of the following approaches:
(a) emphasizing the inquiry aspect, in which case the subject would be raised only with the Big Three and possibly with our traditional Commonwealth confidants, Australia and New Zealand; or
(b) emphasizing the promotional aspect by consulting a number of friendly Commonwealth, NATO and perhaps a few South American states on the question at the same time as, or shortly after we bring it to the attention of the Big Three. This approach would still be in the form of enquiry and consultation but it would promote support for our view and exert some pressure on the United States, United Kingdom and France.
I should be glad to know, if you agree with this general line of reasoning, which of these two alternatives you prefer. 25
(2) After we have notified friendly countries of our position as above, you publicly discuss the question again and advocate the universal membership of all sovereign states which desire to join; 26
(3) We keep in touch with the Colombo Powers in order to learn the exact manner in which they intend to raise the question at the next session of the United Nations: if they suggest that only those applications supported by the Bandung Conference should be dealt with, such a piece-meal approach may compromise the prospects of success for the wider (and in our view much more effective) scheme. 27