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UN says new South African constitution violates Charter

With the United States and Britain abstaining, the Security Council Friday night declared South Africa's new constitution null and void and contrary to the principles of the United Nations Charter.

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The resolution backed by 13 of the council's 15 members also rejected in advance the results of elections later this month for separate mixed race and Asian chambers that are to function alongside South Africa's existing all-white house. The constitution, which goes into effect on September 3, gives no representation to the country's black majority.

US Representative Richard Schifter said the council was not the appropriate UN body to discuss South Africa's new constitution. Britain's John Margetson said his government declined to take a position on the constitution that might jeopardize prospects for additional change.

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