Halpern Moves Amendments to Put Anti-bias Teeth in Foreign Aid Bills

Representative Seymour Halpern, New York Republican, introduced four bills in the House today to restore anti-discrimination amendments of previous years, protecting both American nationals and international commerce, from Arab boycott and blockade tactics. His bills would amend both the foreign aid authorization and appropriation acts.

Representative Halpern told the House his bills would “write into the act unqualified, unequivocal language and would serve notice to the world that the United States expects the recipients of its foreign and to adhere to morality and Justice.”

He said that a weak provision in the preamble to the pending Administration bill, now facing entire elimination by Chairman J. W. Fulbright of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, with concurrence of the State Department, was inconsistent with “the high principles set forth by President Kennedy in his foreign aid message linking social justice and morality with American assistance.”

Representative Halpern cited what he termed a “disgusting” situation in which American citizens, including even Government officials, were barred on a basis of religion from Arab states benefiting from American aid.

The Halpern measures introduced today would restore not only Section 108 of last year’s Mutual Security Act but a previous measure that called on the President to deny aid to nations like the United Arab Republic that blockade international waterways against other recipients of United States aid.

CELLER CALLS FOR ANTI-BLOCKADE STAND

Chairman Emanuel Celler, of the House Judiciary Committee, urged Congress today to retain anti-bias measures in pending Mutual Security legislation including guarantees of freedom of international waterways. The New York Democrat said that the aims of the aid program were negated by the United Arab Republic’s blockade of the Suez Canal. He opposed appeasement by the United States of such Arab tactics.

Representative Celler said the Administration anti-bias clause submitted in the preamble to this year’s aid act was “merely a declaration without teeth and yet there are those who seek to eliminate this clause.” He declared that the present bill should incorporate previous anti-bias provisions, including steps against Arab discrimination affecting Americans as well as Arab boycott and blockade tactics involving Israeli and other commerce.

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