U.N. General Assembly Adopts Resolution Against Racial and Religious Discrimination

The Egyptian resolution calling upon all members of the United Nations to conform to “the letter and the spirit” of the U.N. Charter by putting an immediate and to “religious and so-called racial persecutions and discrimination” was today unanimously adopted by the U.N. General Assembly.

The resolution, which originally referred to persecution “in Central Europe,” was aimed at lessening emigration from European countries to Palestine. However, this provision was omitted after a controversial debate in the U.N. General Committee. Today the Egyptian delegate explained that the proposal now refers “to any kind of persecution.”

The text of the resolution reads as follows: “The General Assembly of the United Nations declares that it is in the higher interests of humanity to put an immediate end to religious and so-called racial persecutions and discrimination, and calls on the governments and responsible authorities to conform both to the letter and to the spirit of the Charter of the United Nations, and to take the most prompt and energetic steps to that end.”

The resolution was supported by the “Big Five” nations as well as smaller countries during 50 minutes of favorable speeches. Andred Vishinsky of Russia, although Speaking in favor of the proposal, criticized it on grounds that it was too general and did not contain precise data. “Discrimination and persecution will exist” he emphasized, “and immediate steps are necessary to put an end to them.” He said the resolution could have been strengthened by the addition of concrete proposals.

His stand was echoed by Sir Hartley Shawcross of Britain, who urged the setting up of the U.N. Human Rights Commission which he said has the duty of drawing up a “Bill of Rights of Man” and providing machinery to protect those rights. He disclosed that Britain will press for the creation of the Commission at this session and will ask that it prepare a code of human rights for presentation at the next session.

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