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SUMMARY RECORD OF MEETING
Held at Lake Success, New York
Thursday, 25 September 1947, at 11 a.m.
Temporary Chairman: Mr. O. ARANHA (Brazil)
1. Election of Chairman
Mr. BELT (Cuba) nominated Mr. Evatt, Minister for External Affairs of Australia, for the chairmanship, paying tribute to him as a man of exceptional character and great legal knowledge, who had moreover been one of the founders of the Charter at San Francisco.
Mr. SCHEYVEN (Belgium) supported the nomination.
Mr. SIMIC (Yugoslavia) regretted that he could not share the views of those who wished to nominate Mr. Evatt. In opposing his candidacy, he did not doubt Mr. Evatt's impartiality, but did not consider that the Chairman should be chosen from among the members of the British Commonwealth of Nations. The political and economic aspects of the Mandate would be discussed in the Committee, and it would be difficult to deny the existence of certain common interests among that great family of nations. Since he had no other candidate to propose, Mr. Simic would abstain from voting.
Mr. LAPIE (France) supported the nomination of Mr. Evatt.
Mr. Evatt was elected Chairman by acclamation and took the Chair.
The CHAIRMAN thanked the Committee for the honour conferred upon him and for the generous references to himself. He was fully conscious of the great responsibility facing the Committee, which, he considered, was among the most important Committees of the current session of the General Assembly.
2. Election of Vice-Chairman
Mr. KAUFFMANN (Denmark) nominated Prince Subha Svasti Svastivat (Siam) for the vice-chairmanship of the Committee.
Mr. SETALVAD (India) seconded the nomination.
Prince Subha Svasti Svastivat was elected Vice-Chairman by acclamation.
3. Election of Rapporteur
Mr. SANTA CRUZ (Chile) nominated Mr. Thors (Iceland), and Mr. SCHEYVEN (Belgium) seconded the nomination.
Mr. Thors was elected Rapporteur by acclamation.
The CHAIRMAN then called upon Mr. Garcia Robles, Secretary of the Committee, to read the letter addressed to the Committee by the President of the General Assembly (A/AC.14/1), referring certain items from the agenda of the second session of, the General Assembly to the Committee for consideration.
4. Representation of the Arab Higher Committee and the Jewish Agency for Palestine
The CHAIRMAN proposed that, provided the Committee had no objection, the Arab Higher Committee and the Jewish Agency for Palestine should be invited to send representatives to be present during the deliberations of the Committee, in order to supply such information and render such assistance as the Committee might require. There was a precedent for that in the procedure adopted at the first special session of the General Assembly.
With the consent of the Committee, the Chairman requested the Secretary-General to inform the two organizations of the Committee's decision.
5. Plan of work
The CHAIRMAN, in considering the method of work to be adopted by the Committee, suggested that before starting to discuss the report of the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine, 1/ it would be convenient to hear a statement from the Mandatory Power, the United Kingdom. He announced that that statement would be made at the following meeting, on 26 September.
He further proposed that at its following meeting, the Committee might review the question of fixing a time limit within which specific proposals, including those submitted by the Special Committee, should be considered by the Committee, following a preliminary examination by the Chairman, Vice-Chairman and Rapporteur.
That proposal was adopted.