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amending the charter should be considered under the procedure of article 108 which permits an amendment to be considered on a case-bycase basis. Also, to the greatest degree possible, changes in the operations of the U.N. should be sought through procedural means instead of the more lengthy process of amendment and ratification.

The subcommittee recognizes the shortcomings and frustrations of the present United Nations system, and agrees with the need for change. But the international consensus essential for productive charter review-both generally and on specific issues-has not evolved. Until such agreement develops, an attempt at comprehensive charter review would be risky and unwieldy.

Toward the goal of increasing the U.N.'s overall performance and capability, the subcommittee recommends the following general policies for the United States in the United Nations, encompassing both specific charter amendments and reforms which do not require charter revision:

The United States should add to the momentum of goodwill garnered in the recent Special Session and press forward the proposals contained in the Group of Experts' report. Too often reports and suggestions of this kind languish in bureaucratic limbo and are never acted upon. At this particular point in the U.N.'s development, overlooking the value of the experts' proposals could contribute to the demise of the United Nations as a means of international cooperation.

The United States should press as well for reforms similar to those suggested for economic activity in other critical areas such as pacific settlement of disputes, peacekeeping, and arms control.

To further increase the effectiveness of the United Nations system, the U.S. should lend its support and even initiative to efforts aimed at greater policy planning, research and analysis of programs and projects in all areas of U.N. activity.

As the world's political, military, and economic character undergoes drastic changes, and as new and massive challenges arise in all areas of human activity, it is important that international institutions keep pace. Yet it is equally vital that no action be taken to undermine the one forum in which meaningful advances may be made toward global cooperation and peace.






Amendments to the present Charter shall come into force for all Members of the United Nations when they have been adopted by a vote of two thirds of the members of the General Assembly and ratified in accordance with their respective constitutional processes by two thirds of the Members of the United Nations, including all the permanent members of the Security Council.

1. A General Conference of the Members of the United Nations for the purpose of reviewing the present Charter may be held at a date and place to be fixed by a two-thirds vote of the members of the General Assembly and by a vote of any seven members of the Security Council. Each Member of the United Nations, shall have one vote in the conference.

2. Any alteration of the present Charter recommended by a two-thirds vote of the conference shall take effect when ratified in accordance with their respective constitutional processes by two-thirds of the Members of the United Nations including all the permanent members of the Security Council.

3. If such a conference has not been held before the tenth annual session of the General Assembly following the coming into force of the present Charter, the proposal to call such a conference shall be placed on the agenda of that session of the General Assembly, and the conference shall be held if so decided by a majority vote of the members of the General Assembly and by a vote of any seven members of the Security Council.



The United Nations, as a political structure, is evolving with the passage of time and by the light of its experience in dealing with the problems of human society. Some substantial possibilities for further evolution, moreover, exist in the present Charter. History and experience show the need for continuing reform of the United Nations to meet the needs of a shrinking, dangerous and rapidly changing world.

Since 1945 the advent of nuclear power, the spreading of armaments, numerous wars, the wasting of resources, a deteriorating environment, rising human expectations in collision with poverty and over-population, a sharp increase, in United Nations membership and major shifts in international relationships, and the demonstrated shortcomings of the United Nations in meeting these and other global problems and in the creation of world law, combine to show the urgency of reform and strengthening of the United Nations.

Proposals for the development of the United Nations must have the guiding purpose of promoting the well-being and dignity of the human person. The longer term aims of the suggestions we offer are:

1. to strenghten the capacity of the United Nations as a means of international decision-making, as a system of justice and as a source of enforceable law, so that it may replace a system based on the threat and destructive use of national


2. to re-enforce human rights and to enable the United Nations to meet needs which nation-states or lower levels of government cannot effectively serve, and 3. to redirect the use of human and natural resources from war and arms into an improvement of the quality of life.

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The World Association of World Federalists suggests, to the Member Nations of the United Nations some important areas for reform of its structure and operation. We recommend such proposals as these to the Member Nations as a response to the request of the Secretary-General, acting for the General Assembly, that Member Nations present their views on review of the United Nations Charter at the 27th and 29th General Assemblies.

We believe that the challenges of our present world environment demand a quantum jump toward world order and that world leadership must move quickly to prepare an adequate response. We urge the 29th General Assembly to establish a United Nations committee for the orderly consideration of suggestions and proposals which have been made and will be made by Member Nations and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, with a view to the adoption at the earliest practicable date of those measures to strengthen the United Nations which gain general support.

Some of the 'recommended proposals would require, at least in part, changes in the present wording of the United Nations Charter. For other proposals, Charter changes would be preferred, but are not absolutely essential. Finally, we offer several suggestions concerning the development of the United Nations system which do not involve the Charter.


1. Membership.-The function of the United Nations is to represent the peoples of humanity. Full implementation of the principle of universal membership will greatly strengthen the United Nations. The seating of the Peoples' Republic of China is a major advance toward the principle of universality. This development provides a basis from which to press forward for the admission of the other States not now Members of the United Nations. Amendment of the Charter is long overdue to remove from its language all reference to the "enemy states" of World War II.

2. Peaceful Settlement of Disputes. The provisions of the Charter for dealing with peaceful settlement of disputes need improvement. Experience indicates that the existing wording is too imprecise and too permissive, often leading to delay and the failure to deal with disputes at the optimum time for their settlement: There has been a tendency, moreover, for the United Nations to immobilize disputes, rather than to settle them.

The redrafting of Article 33 is therefore advisable in order to provide a specific mode of progression, when necessary, from two-party negotiations in increasingly high levels of third-party involvement in stubborn disputes. Such provisions would commit the parties to a dispute, in advance, to accept arbitration or judicial settlement, in the event that negotiation, inquiry, mediation or conciliation may prove insufficient..

While, under Article 29, the Security Council may establish subsidiary organs as it deems them necessary for the performance of its functions, there is in fact nó permanent standing machinery to function in pacific settlement of political disputes. Therefore the wording of Article 37 should be amended to include provisions for a standing Conciliation and Arbitration Commission. Such a Commission should consist of a small group of persons universally respected, such as past Presidents of the General Assembly; the Commission should determine its own procedures and methods, and its work should normally be confidential.

3. The International Court of Justice. It is desirable to relate the Court much more closely and effectively to the maintenance of international peace and security. No single act would be of greater aid to this aim than for states to declare that they recognize as compulsory the jurisdiction of the Court in all legal disputes. In addition, the following amendments, among others, are worth consideration in reviewing the Charter and the Statutes of the International Court of Justice:

(a) There should be a provision for referring automatically to the International Court of Justice for judicial settlement the justiciable legal elements of any dispute which has proved intractable under a revised Article 33 on Peaceful Settlement.

(b) Broader provisions for the use of the Court for advisory opinions are necessary. At present the Security Council, the General Assembly, and any United Nations organ or agency so authorized by the Assembly may request an opinion. In addition, regional organizations, individual States, and the SecretaryGeneral should have such rights before the Court.

(c) The United Nations as a legal entity should also have authorization to bring cases before the Court.

(d) There should be provisions to establish international regional Courts under the supervision of the International Court of Justice, and for the right of litigants to appeal from a regional court to the International Court of Justice. 4. Human Rights. At the present time the United Nations deals with most human rights matters at as many as five different stages: in a sub-committee or ad hoc committee or by a special rapporteur, then in the Commission on Human Rights, in ECOSOC, next in the Third Committee, and in the Plenary of the General Assembly. The United Nations should create a new human Rights Council to integrate these steps and to report directly to the General Assembly. Such a Council would be on the level of the Economic and Social Council, and would relieve ECOSOC of its human rights responsibilities, thus freeing it to concentrate on economic and social developments.

It is desirable that the United Nations should implement the proposal for creating a new post of High Commissioner for Human Rights. The establishment of a World Court of Human Rights to supplement existing and planned regional Courts of Human Rights deserves study. Such a World Court of Human Rights would have responsibiliites analogous to the European Court of Human Rights. 5. Strengthening the ECOSOC.-The United Nations Economic and Social Council needs the means to fulfill the functions for which it is responsible. Moreover, the authorization in the Charter for ECOSOC to "coordinate the activities of the Specialized Agencies through consultation" is inadequate. We may well expect that the present enlarged membership of ECOSOC will strengthen its ability to make broadly based decisions of policy. It is important that ECOSOC reflect the kind of concerns about the terms of trade, commodity price levels and related matters which are central interests of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

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