San Francisco (May. 25)
The trusteeship committee of the United Nations Conference, after a bitter fight by members of Arab delegations, last night adopted a revised trusteeship plan proposed by the United States and supported by Britain, USSR, France and China, under the terms of which no changes will be made in the provisions of the Palestine mandate should it be transferred to the trusteeship system.
The attempt of the Arab delegations to frustrate adoption of the plan by the trusteeship committee came after they failed to secure a majority of votes in the committee on an amendment Egypt introduced several days ago, which provided that all territerial mandates be annulled and the territory transferred immediately to the new world security organization. Twenty-two members of the trusteeship committee voted against this amendment and only five supported it.
At last night’s session, the Egyptian member again introduced a motion whose object was to curb Jewish rights in Palestine. The motion was defeated as a result of the opposition of Commander Harold E. Stassen, who represented the U.S. delegation on the committee, and who was supported by Prime Minister Peter Fraser of New Zealand, chairman of the committee. The representatives of Russia, Britain, France and Holland also supported Stassen who spoke several times against the Egyptian proposal.
Realizing that the Egyptian motion was doomed, the representative of Iraq moved to postpone the vote on the motion. This Arab maneuver was also opposed by Stassen, but, curiously enough, was supported this time by Russia, Haiti and Cuba. The Iraq motion was taken to a vote and was defeated 19 to 11. Further motions by Egypt, Syria and Lebanon were also defeated.
Jewish representatives today expressed satisfaction with the revised trusteeship plan as adopted. They were especially gratified by the uncompromising stand taken by Commander Stassen in leading the opposition against the Arab efforts. The plan stipulates that “except as may be agreed upon in individual trusteeship arrangements placing each territory under the trusteeship system, nothing in this chapter should be construed in and of itself to alter in any manner the rights of any state or any peoples in any territory, or the terms of the mandate.” This stipulation guarantees that no changes can be made affecting Jewish rights under – the provisions of the Palestine mandate.
The trusteeship plan makes it possible to declare the Haifa district a “etrategic area” under the supervision of the Security Council of the new world organization. The remainder of Palestine would then fall under ordinary trusteeship which is to operate under the authority of a Trusteeship Council which will be empowered “to consider reports by the administering state, to accept petitions and examine them in consultation with the administering state, to make periodic visite to the respective territories at times agreed upon with the administering state, and to take other action in conformity with the trusteeship arrangements.”
Under the terms of the plan, the trusteeship arrangement with regard to Palestine would have to be agreed upon by Britain which is now entrusted with the carrying out of the Palestine mandate.