Evatt to Makin

Cablegram unnumbered SAN FRANCISCO, 23 June 1945, 10.08 p.m.

Following is text of Statement which I released to the Press today and which summarises what we have done at San Francisco.

Begins: - Australia originally proposed 38 amendments of substance. Of these 38 26 have either been adopted without material change or have been adopted in principle or have been made unnecessary by other alterations; two have led to significant alterations. Besides these six important new obligations in relation to the trusteeship of dependent peoples were suggested and have been included in the new Chapter. There were also important amendments introduced during Committee discussions and amendments sponsored by others which the Australian Delegation actively supported to success. The Australian proposals which were accepted include the following (1) Amendment to lay down a governing principle aimed at protection of territorial integrity and political independence of member States.

(2) Provisions that peaceful settlement shall proceed not arbitrarily but in conformity with the principles of justice and international law.

(3) Inclusion of a specific provision that the only permissible intervention of the organisation in matters of domestic jurisdiction shall be in the case of actual enforcement measures by the Security Council.

(4) The most vital amendment to extend the Assembly’s right of discussion and recommendation to all matters and questions within the scope of the Charter which necessarily includes preamble, purposes, principles and all the activities of the organs.

(5) Amendment preventing freezing of disputes in the Security Council as occurred in the League of Nations by requiring the Security Council to report to the Assembly or the member States immediately it has ceased to deal with the dispute.

(6) Amendment designed to ensure that all the special military agreements to place forces and facilities at the disposal of the Security Council shall be made not by members inter se but by the Security Council with each member or group of members.

(7) Amendment to secure that in the election of non-permanent members of the Security Council, special regard shall be had first to proven ability to contribute to international security and then to geographical representation.

(8) The substance of Australia’s amendment specifically providing for the right of self defence in case of inaction by the Security Council was incorporated in Senator Vandenberg’s [1] formula on regional arrangement.

(9) Amendments to the Economic and Social Chapter to include the promotion of full employment and higher living standards within the purposes of the Economic Council.

(10) Inclusion of a definite pledge by each member to take action to promote (inter alia) the objective of full employment by joint and separate action in co-operation with the organisation.

(11) An amendment designed to secure that the objective of the organisation will be that fundamental human rights shall not only be respected but observed.

(12) Amendments to enlarge the powers of the Economic and Social Council to enable it to call conferences, to prepare conventions, to coordinate agencies and generally to act as a coordinating economic body.

(13) Contribution to the new chapter on trusteeship. Seven Australian amendments were adopted including a general declaration of trusteeship in relation to all non-self-governing countries and the specifying of obligations of the trustee as including (a) Just treatment of the peoples concerned, (b) their protection against abuses, (c) the promotion of constructive measures of development, (d) encouragement of research, (e) full co-operation with other international bodies, and most important (f)the transmission regularly to the World Organisation of full statistical information relating to economic social and educational conditions of the native people.

(14) The removal of the individual veto on Constitutional Amendments was not obtained but in co-operation with other smaller nations the opportunities of special constitutional review were facilitated.

This is by no means a complete measure of the work of the Australian Delegation. For instance, we assisted Peru in obtaining the adoption of the general rule of practice that meetings of the Assembly shall be open to the public and the press of the world.

Moreover, our efforts contributed to the solemn undertaking by the Five Great Powers that every dispute before the Security Council would be discussed and considered in spite of this. Our main proposal on the veto issue was that there should be no individual great power veto on any of the processes of conciliation. Our proposal was lost although it would have been adopted but for the plain intimation by the Great Powers that the Charter would not be signed if the amendment were carried.

Perhaps the most important achievement of the Conference is the work of the small nations in liberalising and making more democratic the Dumbarton Oaks text.

Australia could not possibly have succeeded to the extent indicated herein but for the resolution and steadiness of many nations including important British Dominions, Latin American, European and Middle East Nations. In view of this valuable co- operation it is in my opinion certain that the General Assembly of the World Organisation will be a democratic institution and will not tolerate any resurgence of Fascism.


1 U.S. delegate to the San Francisco Conference.


[AA : A1066, H45/771/1]