171 Department of External Affairs to Australian Delegation, United Nations

Cablegram [UNY]294 CANBERRA, 22 October 1946


Your UN.506. [1] Admission of New Members.

The Minister directs the question be handled on the following lines:

1. Attention should be called in the Assembly at appropriate time to the manner in which the Security Council has handled applications for admission, particularly emphasising failure to make decisions based on empirical appraisal of the merits of each case, the obvious use of political bargaining and unjustifiable threat of and exercise of the veto.

2. An attempt should be made to secure a declaration by the Assembly which would recognise that the admission of new members to the United Nations is a corporate act on the part of the whole Organisation; that the Assembly has primary and final responsibilities in the process of admission; and that proper procedure must be found to co-ordinate these Assembly responsibilities with the particular concern of the Security Council which is to make recommendations on security aspects of applicants.

3. Support for (2) above would open the way for a request that the Committee of Experts of the Security Council should meet the Assembly Standing Committee on Procedures with a view to working out agreed rules in keeping with principle of (2) above.

4. In any event Council should be requested to report on its grounds for rejection of applicants not recommended. Where Assembly is not satisfied with such reasons the application in question Should be discussed by the Assembly and if approved referred back to the Council with a request for reconsideration.

5. When the Council's recommended applicants (Afghanistan, Iceland, Sweden) come before the Assembly you should support their admission subject to;

(a) Re-affirming views expressed in Australia's previous reservation to report of Security Council's Committee on Membership.

(b) Our right to re-open in accordance with (2) and (4) above the claims of rejected applicants which Australia, without prejudice to other claims, considers to be qualified for membership, namely Eire and Trans-Jordan. [2]

1 Document 158.

2 Prior to further First Committee discussion on the procedure for admission of new members, the General Assembly in plenary session on 9 November unanimously resolved to admit Afghanistan, Iceland and Sweden to membership of the United Nations (Resolution 34(I)).

[AA:A1067, M46/1/5]