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American Jewish Conference Urges Swift Adoption by U.N. of Genocide Convention

Asserting that the early conclusion of a convention on genocide would mark a new milestone in man’s struggle for justice and order in the family of nations, the American Jewish Conference today called upon the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations to hasten the adoption of such an international law.

In a letter to Dr. Charles Malik, president of the Economic and Social Council, the Conference declared that an internationally recognized convention against genocide was not only a matter of necessity, but one of urgency. “Such a convention,” the letter pointed out, “would provide the first instance in human history of legal protection of racial, national and religious groups against annihilation.”

The Conference communication emphasized that the organization was concerned not only with the protection of the physical existence of human groups, but also with the protection, of their religious and cultural rights. “We are therefore grateful to note,” the letter declared, “that Article 3 of the new draft convention contains provisions which make the destruction of churches and cultural institutions a crime.”