New York (Nov. 1)
Soviet delegate Andrei Vishinsky today blocked the efforts of Saudi Arabia to delay consideration by the United Nations of the refugee problem and the formation of the International Refugee Organization which is to take over from UNRRA the work of caring for displaced persons.
Saudi Arabian delegate Abdul Monim Bey Riad, addressing the Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee, expressed opposition to the suggestion by Sir Carl Berendsen, chairman of the committee, that the refugee question be placed first on the agenda because of the urgency of the problem. He argued that this question would involve the committee in lengthy discussions and therefore urged that non-controversial items be taken up first.
Taking issue with the Saudi Arabian representative, Vishinsky declared that the Soviet delegation attached the greatest importance to finding a solution to the problem of refugees, on which the fate of the displaced persons depended and which, he said, was being anxiously watched by their friends and relatives. He opposed postponement of the refugee question beyond Monday. As a result of his appeal the committee decided to leave it to the chairman to suggest the order of the agenda at the next meeting tomorrow.
Vishinsky also prevented Abdul Monim Bey Riad from securing the post of rapporteur of the committee. The Saudi Arabian delegate was nominated for this post by Egypt, but Vishinsky objected to the nomination on the grounds that a Norwegian had already been selected for the post at the first part of the Assembly in London last February. Thereupon, Saudi Arabia withdrew its candidacy.