UNITED NATIONS: Defeat for the U.S.

A year and a half ago U.N. Secretary General Trygve Lie fired U.S. employees on his staff whom the U.S. considered disloyal. The result was a hue and cry. Twenty-one of those dismissed appealed to the U.N. Administrative Tribunal, a review board set up by the General Assembly. The tribunal held that eleven had been illegally fired, and awarded them $180,000 damages. The U.S. protested, and asked the General Assembly to overrule the tribunal.

The debate foundered on one legal question, and the Assembly put it up to the International Court of Justice: Must the General Assembly abide by a tribunal...

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