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"As is" reference - not a United Nations document

Source: League of Nations
31 December 1925


REPORT
BY HIS BRITANNIC MAJESTY'S GOVERNMENT
TO THE COUNCIL OF THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS
ON THE ADMINISTRATION OF
PALESTINE AND TRANSJORDAN
FOR THE YEAR
1925


SECTION I.

PALESTINE.

I.--INTRODUCTORY.
General.

The year under review has been one of tranquillity, of consolidation of administrative work, and of increased prosperity. Notable events were the visits of the Secretaries of State for the Colonies and Air, the change of High Commissioners, and the formal inauguration of the Hebrew University by the Earl of Balfour, K.G., at which Viscount Allenby, His Majesty's High Commissioner for Egypt, and a number of other distinguished guests were present.

Changes in the Administration were the amalgamation, for reasons of economy, of the Jerusalem-Jaffa District with the Southern District, and the retirement of Sir Gilbert Clayton, K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., after two years' valuable service in the office of Chief Secretary. His successor is Lieutenant-Colonel G. S. Symes, C.M.G., D.S.O., formerly District Governor of the Northern District. The title of District Governor has been changed to District Commissioner.

In spite of the disturbed situation beyond the northern frontier and the entry into Palestine of several thousand refugees from Syria, public security was well maintained, and there is a satisfactory decrease in highway robbery and other heinous crimes.

Public health has been good. An Anti-Malaria Commission of the League of Nations which visited Palestine in the spring formed a favourable impression of the work already carried out in the country.

Progress has been made in the conservation of monuments of archaeological interest in Palestine and Transjordan, and several excavation parties are at work. The most sensational find of the year was a skull of Neanderthal type and other remains of primitive man which were discovered near Tabgha, on Lake Tiberias, by the British School of Archæology.

The Palestine Citizenship Order in Council came into force on the 1st of August; a revised Immigration Ordinance has been promulgated; the Convention between His Majesty's Government and the Government of the United States of America relating to the treatment of American citizens in Palestine was ratified in December.

Policy.

The year, with its preoccupations about Public Security consequent on events in Syria, was not propitious for an advance in the political organization of the Country; and the proposal to form a Legislative Council has not been, and cannot usefully be, revived while Arab political leaders maintain their opposition to a fundamental principle of the Mandate. The Advisory Council to which all new legislation is referred is still composed exclusively of officers of the Government.

It is in the organization of local rather than of central Government that real progress towards autonomy can be made immediately. In this connection the development of Municipal and Local Councils is of great importance. It is hoped at an early date to put the majority of these Councils on an elective basis and to prepare a Municipal Ordinance which will define their powers and functions with greater precision than the existing Ottoman law.

Of no less importance is the regulation of those organs of the several communities which under Ottoman rule were entrusted with and continue to discharge many of what may be termed cultural functions of local government. By these organs Moslems, Christians and Jews will be enabled to conduct freely and separately their communal affairs, leaving to municipal bodies those enterprises in which Arabs and Jews can profitably combine on a basis of common interest. On the extension of this basis in the political and economic spheres depends the realization of a peaceful and prosperous Palestinian State.

A special Commission, composed of Sir Anton Bertram, late Chief Justice of Ceylon, and Mr. J. W. Young, rendered a valuable report on the affairs of the Orthodox Patriarchate and Community which is being published.

Finance.

The improved state of the finances of the Country consequent on greater prosperity is shown by the increased receipts of the principal revenue-earning departments. Customs receipts were £E.363,000 in excess of the total for 1924. Posts and Telegraphs realized a profit of £E.54,500 on the year's working, but it must be remembered that from this profit provision has to be made for interest and sinking fund on the capital expenditure of the Department which has been or will be met from loan funds. Fees on private lands transactions amounted to £E.110,000. The gross earnings of all sections of the Palestine Railways totalled £E.604,500, and showed substantial increases of passenger, including tourist, traffic and freights. This includes the value of services rendered to other Government Departments and also the revenue of the Hejaz and Kantara-Rafa Railways. The easier financial situation, which was also promoted by rigid economy in the administrative services, enabled the Government in May, 1925, to reduce the tithe on agricultural produce, which weighed heavily on the cultivators, from 12 1/2 per cent. to its pre-war level of 10 per cent. Notwithstanding this, the surplus balances at the end of the year reached a total of £E.1,069,576.185; as is explained under the Finance section of this Report, these balances have been used to finance works of a capital nature in anticipation of the raising of a loan, and in addition substantial advances have been obtained from the Crown Agents for the Colonies for the same purposes.

Agriculture and Land Settlement.

The year on the whole and in spite of a comparatively light rainfall was not unfavourable to agriculture, and cultivators realized good prices for their produce.

The problem of putting this staple industry of the country on a sound basis is engaging the serious attention of the Government. Sir E. Dowson, K.B.E., lately Financial Adviser and Director-General of Surveys in Egypt, after a careful study of local conditions, has suggested general lines of reforms which could usefully be introduced, and will collaborate in the preparation of a systematic programme for their execution over a period of years. Sir Ernest Dowson went to Palestine early in 1926 for the purpose of discussing his proposals with the High Commissioner. The result of these discussions will be included in the next report. The reforms include the codification of the Land code, an improved system of registration of Title to Land, fiscal surveys to prepare the way for the introduction of a simplified and more accurate Land Tax and for Land Settlement, and a revaluation of immovable property for revenue purposes in urban areas.

Thirteen new Jewish agricultural settlements were formed.

Education.

A reform of the organization of educational work in the best interests of the youth of the country is a matter of urgency. Despite the variety of educational effort, the need for more and better schools and for better financial arrangements for existing schools is apparent. It is also desirable to associate all sections of the population as directly as possible with an enterprise that so vitally concerns them. The achievement of these desiderata is not a simple matter.

There are two systems of public undenominational education, one Arab, the other Hebrew, distinguished from each other by nationality and language.

The Arab system is directly controlled by the Government Department of Education, the Hebrew system is less directly controlled by Government through the Palestine Zionist Executive, which represents the World Zionist Organization.

I.--The Arab public system comprises 315 schools maintained from general revenues and local contributions. In the villages the majority of these schools are the creation of the British Government; most of those in the towns were formerly Ottoman public schools. The registered pupils number 19,881, of whom about one-eighth are Christians.

II.--The Hebrew public system comprises 139 schools maintained largely from the funds of the World Zionist Organization, but also from local contributions, fees and small grants-in-aid from general revenues. The number of registered pupils is 15,328.

Other minor Palestinian educational systems are subject to general supervision by the Departments of Education and Health. Schools which fulfil certain conditions receive small grants-in-aid. These systems are as follows:--

The total number of Palestinian schools not directly controlled by the Department of Education or the Palestine Zionist Executive is as follows:--

Arab schools, 102 with 7,063 pupils;
Jewish schools, 107 with 6,728 pupils.

Besides the above Palestinian schools there is a large number of Christian and Jewish schools. Apart from fees, they are supported in the main by the funds of foreign missionary or other bodies, but some receive also small grants from general revenues. Foreign Christian societies maintain 132 schools with 12,265 pupils, of whom rather more than one-sixth are non-Christian. An unknown proportion of the pupils are foreigners. Foreign Jewish societies maintain nine schools with 3,499 pupils, of whom only thirty-five are non-Jews.

In all, 64,764 pupils receive instruction in 804 schools.

Commerce and Industry.

A public notice inviting tenders for the development of the mineral resources of the Dead Sea was issued in May by the Crown Agents.

Twenty-seven Palestinian companies, representing a total capital of more than £E.250,000, were registered.

Fuel-power stations for the generation of electrical light and energy have been established at Haifa and Tiberias by the Palestine Electric Corporation, Limited.

This increase in commercial activity, in building enterprise and new industrial developments is due almost entirely to Jewish capital and the entry during the year of an immigrant class with money to invest.


Immigration.

Thirty-three thousand eight hundred and one Jewish immigrants entered Palestine during the year.

This Jewish immigration, which was nearly three times as large as that of 1924, whilst unquestionably conferring benefits, has introduced new problems. The ready absorption into the economic life of so small and unproductive a country of men and women of various types, tastes and capacities, is a difficult matter which has required all the energy and resources of the Zionist Organization to deal with satisfactorily. A number of these immigrants would like to become farmers, and the ratio of Jewish rural to urban settlement tends to increase, but agricultural settlement is a slow and costly process, and although 129,366 dunums were acquired by Jewish agencies and individuals in the course of the year, it has hitherto--and for reasons given in previous reports--been impossible for the Government to put State or waste lands at the disposal of new settlers. As the result a large proportion of immigrants gravitate to the principal towns and are dependent for their livelihood on commercial and industrial enterprises.

Most of the new industries find their development retarded by the high cost of living with its corollary, costly production. Many of them ask for measures of protection which, if granted, would tend to raise the cost of living. The Government policy in these matters is to grant customs facilities in respect of raw material, and to assist the development of an export trade in those industries which are capable of utilizing local products, and in certain others in which the raw material is an inconsiderable item in the cost of production as compared with the value of the capital, energy and commercial capacity engaged.

Labour Questions.

In connection with these industrial developments, labour questions are becoming increasingly frequent and important. Jewish employers, for sentimental and political reasons, engage and pay Jewish workmen, skilled and unskilled, who are well-organized and demand approximately the same conditions as regards wages, standard of living and labour legislation as exist in a modern and homogeneous state.

The existing legislation, whilst it provides for a measure of control over premises by the Department of Health, is admittedly defective, but care must be exercised in introducing new laws suitable to the special conditions of the country and its diverse population.

In view of the importance of this subject, an Official Standing Committee has been appointed to collect information and advise as to the need for new legislation, more especially for the inspection of factories and the protection of women and children engaged in industrial pursuits. A Workmen's Compensation Ordinance is under consideration, and the Standing Committee has been in communication with labour and other organizations which can promote the purposes of its inquiry.


SECTION III.
QUESTIONNAIRE OF PERMANENT MANDATES COMMISSION,
WITH BRIEF REPLIES.
I.--JEWISH NATIONAL HOME.

1.Q. What measures have been taken to place the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the establishment of the national home of the Jewish people? What are the effects of these measures?

A. The direction and objects of the policy of the Government of Palestine in law, administration and finance are unchanged. The visible results of the policy have been tranquillity, increased Jewish immigration, progress of Jewish agricultural settlement. The expansion of industry has been encouraged by the grant of exemption of certain raw materials from import duty (see [pages ] of this Report).

The regulations under the Immigration Ordinance, 1925, set up a statutory procedure for the introduction of Jewish immigrant labour into Palestine. The Palestinian Citizenship Order in Council, 1925, facilitates the acquisition of Palestinian nationality by persons settling in the country, including those who opted for Palestinian citizenship under the Palestine Legislative Council Election Order in Council, 1922. There was a remarkable development of Jewish Co-operative Societies, constituted principally for building, agricultural and mutual credit purposes. Twenty-six Jewish companies were formed.

2.Q. What measures have been taken to place the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the development of self-governing institutions? What are the effects of these measures?

A. Progress in this direction is still in the sphere of local rather than central government. The powers and jurisdiction of municipalities were validated, extended and defined by the Municipal Councils Validation, the Determination of Areas of Municipalities and the Municipal Rates Ordinances (see page of this Report).

3.Q. What measures have been taken to bring the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will safeguard the civil and religious rights of all the inhabitants of Palestine, irrespective of race and religion? What are the effects of these measures?

A. The Palestinian Citizenship Order in Council which was made in August, 1925, provides for the acquisition of Palestinian citizenship by persons habitually resident in the country who were Ottoman subjects, and persons who were foreign subjects and take up permanent residence.

The Convention between His Majesty's Government and the Government of the United States which provides for the treatment of American citizens in Palestine and places them on the same footing as other foreign subjects, came into force in December, 1925. The Convention recites the Mandate and declares that the United States consents to the administration of Palestine by His Britannic Majesty pursuant to the Mandate. It expressly
confers on the nationals of the United States the right to establish and maintain educational and religious institutions subject to the provision of any local laws for the maintenance of public order and public morals.

A Commission under the Chairmanship of Sir Anton Bertram, ex-Chief Justice of Ceylon, was appointed by the High Commissioner to enquire into controversies between the Orthodox Patriarchate and the Arab Orthodox Community as to the rights of the laity; controversies not affecting the custody of the Holy Places nor falling within the competence of the proposed Holy Places Commission. The Report of the Commission has not yet been published.

II.--AUTONOMOUS ADMINISTRATION.

Q. What measures have been taken to encourage local autonomy? What are the effects of these measures?

A. The reply to I (2) above is relevant.

Local Hospital Committees now exist in all the principal centres except Jerusalem and Haifa. Local Councils were established at two Arab villages and one German agricultural settlement; additional powers of taxation were conferred on the Councils already existing in two other Arab villages and on the Council for the Jewish Township of Tel-Aviv.

III.--JEWISH AGENCY.

1.Q. When and in what manner has the Jewish Agency been officially recognized?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1923.

2.Q. Has this Agency given any advice to the Administration in the past year? If so, in what form and in what connection?

A. The Palestine Committee of the Agency (Palestine Zionist Executive) and the Head Office of the Zionist Organization have been given special opportunity of expressing their views on the draft Passport and Immigration Ordinances and Regulations as well as on questions affecting the organization of the Jewish Community which are still engaging the attention of the Government of Palestine.

3.Q. What is the nature and extent of the co-operation of this Agency with the Administration of Palestine in economic, social and other matters?

A. The general reply contained in the Report for 1924 holds good (see also page of this Report).

4.Q. In what manner has this Agency taken part in the development of the country (statistics of results obtained)?

A. Immigration increased the Jewish population of Tel-Aviv and Haifa by 10,000 and 6,000 respectively. There was a corresponding growth in industrial activity. According to approximate figures supplied by the Jewish Agency, there were in November, 1925, 547 Jewish industrial enterprises in Palestine, employing 7,000 workpeople, and representing an invested capital of £E.2,500,000.

The Jewish schools controlled by the Jewish Agency through its Palestine Committee now number 132, with 550 teachers and 13,246 pupils; the expenditure of the Agency on these schools was £E.63,000 for the year ending the 30th of September, 1925.

The Palestine Committee of the Agency maintains a section for Trade and Industry to advise immigrants; it grants loans to immigrants in connection with industrial undertakings, and to local (Jewish) authorities for the execution of public works.

The Jewish Agency has contributed substantially to the capital of the Palestine Electric Corporation.

5.Q. What steps have been taken in consultation with His Britannic Majesty's Government to secure the co-operation of all Jews who are willing to assist in the establishment of the Jewish National Home?

A. The negotiations, described in the reply in the Report for 1924, for establishing the Jewish Agency on a wider basis were continued.

The following resolutions were adopted at the fourteenth Zionist Congress in August, 1925:--

The Congress declares as follows:--

2. The legitimate claims of the contributors to the Keren Hayesod in regard to representation on the Jewish Agency shall receive consideration in connection with the extension of the Agency.

IV.--IMMIGRATION AND EMIGRATION.

1.Q. What measures have been taken to facilitate Jewish immigration?

A. The new Immigration Ordinance and Regulations came into force in September (for particulars see [pages ] in this Report).

In addition to the persons who entered Palestine as immigrants, 1,674 travellers, including 1,251 Jews, were granted permission to remain permanently in Palestine after it had been ascertained that they fell within the categories of settlers defined in the Immigration Ordinance.

The general reply to this question in the Report for 1924 still holds good.

2.Q. What measures have been taken to safeguard the rights and position of other sections of the population?

A. So far as possible the new Immigration Ordinance and Regulations were framed on the principle that immigration to Palestine must be regulated by the economic capacity of the country to absorb new settlers, thus safeguarding the rights and position of the existing population. Seven hundred and thirty-one persons, including 534 Jews, who failed to comply with the Regulations were rejected at the frontiers and ports in 1925.

3.Q. What measures have been taken in co-operation with the Jewish Agency to encourage the close settlement by Jews on the land (give figures)?

A. Thirty-two thousand five hundred acres of agricultural land were purchased by Jews in 1925; thirteen new settlements were established; 3,000 acres of Government land at Baisan were offered on a long lease to the Palestine Zionist Executive for colonization by Jewish ex-soldiers, but found unsuitable. Negotiations have been opened for the lease of 6,000 acres of Government land near Rafa and about 4,000 acres near Haifa. The area of Jewish ownership in Palestine is now 200,000 acres. The Department of Agriculture advises Jewish colonizing agencies on land development, farming methods, control of animal disease and insect pests, agricultural education and the commercial aspects of agriculture. A new Jewish village is now being established at Affule mainly under the direction of the American Zion Commonwealth, and arrangements are being made with a Jewish Land Development Agency to drain and develop the Kishon swamps north of Haifa, hitherto a source of virulent malaria.

4.Q. What are the effects of these measures? Statistics of immigration (country of origin, religion, race, profession, age and sex). Geographical distribution within the country in the urban centres and in the rural districts. Same statistics for emigration.

A. There has been little change in the relative distribution of the Jewish population in the urban centres and in the rural districts; the following is a comparative table of the distribution in October, 1922, and December, 1925, supplied by the Palestine Committee of the Jewish Agency.

Urban.October, 1922.December, 1925.
Jerusalem .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Tel-Aviv .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Jaffa .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Haifa .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Tiberias .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Safad .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Affule .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Hebron .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
Other towns .. .. .. .. .. .. ..
33,971
15,065
5,887
6,230
4,427
2,986
--
430
426
42,000
40,000
8,000
14,000
5,000
3,000
1,000
800
200
Total
Rural

Total
.. .. .. .. .. ..
.. .. .. .. .. ..

.. .. .. .. .. ..
68,622
15,172

83,794
114,000
24,000

138,000


The total number of Jewish settlements at the end of 1924 exceeded 100; nine new settlements were founded by the Jewish Agency. The area of land under cultivation was increased from 18,000 to 24,000 acres.

Special attention is paid to dairy farming in the Jewish settlements; the Palestine Committee of the Jewish Agency expended £E.26,000 in 1924 and 1925 for pure-bred stock, distributing 3,050 head, and provided funds for extensive planting of fruit and timber trees.

A Jewish co-operative textile group has purchased 1,000 acres of land near Haifa, where it will also engage in fruit growing and vegetable gardening.

Thirty-three thousand eight hundred and one Jewish and 840 non-Jewish immigrants entered Palestine in 1925; of the Jewish immigrants, 30,261 belonged to the Ashkenazic section, the remainder were Sephardic, divided as follows:--

Balkan States and Morocco .. .. .. .. .. .. 1,236
Yemen .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 513
Kurdistan .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 278
Persia .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 229
Bokhara .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 40
Others .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 884

For the general distribution of Jewish immigrants according to countries of origin, see [pages ] in this Report.

With regard to sex, the Jewish immigrants were classified as follows:--

13,926 men,
11,652 women, and
8,223 children.

No statistics as to age are available.

According to figures supplied by the Palestine Committee of the Agency, the previous occupations of 16,755 of the Jewish immigrants were as follows:--
I.--Trades and Professions.

Agriculture .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 2,231
Tailoring and clothing .. .. .. .. .. .. 1,612
Building and construction .. .. .. .. .. 849
Wood and furniture.. .. .. .. .. .. .. 798
Metal work .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 641
Alimentary .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 361
Textiles .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 355
Leather work .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 195
Printing and paper .. .. .. .. .. .. 163
Chemicals, paints, oils .. .. .. .. .. .. 69
Transport and communication .. .. .. .. .. 60
Mining and quarrying .. .. .. .. .. .. 12
Miscellaneous skilled trades .. .. .. .. .. 124 7,470
II.--Unskilled Labour.

Unskilled labourers .. .. .. .. .. .. 4,660
III.--Liberal Professions.

Education .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 411
Medical .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 335
Engineering .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 73
Artistic .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 78
Miscellaneous .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 50
Religion .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 107 1,054

IV.--Commerce.

Merchants .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 2,349
Owners of factories .. .. .. .. .. .. 193
Officials .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 309
Others .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 10 2,861

V.--Students (over the age of 16 years) .. .. .. 710

Total 16,755
______

The remainder of 17,046 consists of dependants or persons without definite calling.

No statistics in regard to emigration are available beyond those given on page of this Report.

V.--LAND RÉGIME.

1.Q. How have State lands been defined and delimited?

A. Twelve thousand acres of Government land at Caesarea and 1,640 acres at Baisan were demarcated by the Department of Surveys.

In thirty-two legal actions the Courts decided in favour of the Government of Palestine against persons claiming ownership of State land; the area involved was approximately 2,500 acres. Forest land, for which no prima facie evidence of ownership exists, is defined and administered as forest reserves.

2.Q. How have waste lands been defined and delimited?

A. During the demarcation of private lands in connection with private sales, adjoining waste areas of about 4,000 acres were excluded and registered as State lands.

3.Q. What measures have been taken for the registration of real property?

A. See [pages ] in this Report. The Department of Surveys covered an area of 40,000 acres in separate village surveys.

VI.--NATIONALITY.

1.Q. What is the text of the nationality law?

A. The text of the Palestinian Citizenship Order in Council and of a Proclamation by the High Commissioner for Palestine amending Article 2 thereof are reprinted in Section 4 of this Report.

2.Q. Have special provisions been enacted, framed so as to facilitate the acquisition of Palestinian citizenship by Jews?

A. Article 5 of the Order facilitates the acquisition of citizenship by Jews who opted therefor under Article 2 of the Palestine Legislative Council Election Order in Council, 1922. The qualifications for naturalization are simple: two years' residence in Palestine out of the three years preceding application, good character, and the declared intention to settle in Palestine; knowledge of Hebrew is accepted under the literacy qualification. In special cases the High Commissioner is empowered to grant naturalization even if the period of residence has not been within the three years preceding application. Special naturalization offices have already been opened in Jerusalem, Haifa and Tiberias; and an officer is visiting the Jewish agricultural settlements in the north to receive applications on the spot.

VII.--JUDICIAL SYSTEM.

1.Q. When did the new judicial organization begin to operate?

A. See the reply for 1924. The Courts (Amendment) and the Jurisdiction of Civil and Religious Courts Ordinances were passed in 1925. The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court sitting as a High Court of Justice to consider applications with regard to the liberty of the individual, and with regard to the alleged abuse or excess of authority by any public officer or public body was remarkably developed within the year. For particulars see [pages ] of this Report.

2.Q. What special features does it include with a view to assuring to foreigners as well as to natives a complete guarantee of their rights as laid down in Article 9?

A. See the reply for 1924. By the Convention between His Majesty's Government and the Government of the United States which came into force in December, 1925, American citizens became subject to the same rules of jurisdiction in criminal and civil matters as other foreigners. See also page of this Report.

3.Q. What special measures have been taken to assure respect for the personal status of the various peoples and communities and for their religious interests?

A. The Civil and Religious Courts Jurisdiction Ordinance is such a measure.

4.Q. How have the control and administration of Wakfs been assured?

A. In addition to the existing provision by which jurisdiction over Wakfs constituted before a Religious Court is assured to the religious authority of the community concerned, the Charitable Trusts Amendment Ordinance and the Public Trustee of Charities Ordinance, amplify the measures passed in the previous year to facilitate the establishment of charitable trusts under the Civil Law which will be under the jurisdiction of the Civil Courts. The Public Trustee Ordinance, moreover, enables the Religious Authority to apply for the appointment of a public officer as the trustee of a religious endowment.

Elections to the Supreme Moslem Council were held in 1925; the results have not yet been declared.

5.Q. What extradition agreements have been made between the Mandatory and other foreign Powers since the coming into force of the Mandate?

A. The Convention between His Majesty's Government and the Government of the United States (see reply to 2) provides that Extradition Treaties and Conventions in force between Great Britain and the United States shall apply to Palestine. The High Court has held that the Anglo-German Extradition Treaty is applicable to Palestine.

VIII.--ECONOMIC EQUALITY

1.Q. How have the interests of the Community been safeguarded in the execution of measures taken to secure the development of the country in respect of public ownership or control of any of the natural resources of the country or of the public works, services and utilities?

A. See the reply for 1924. The Tobacco and Salt Ordinances are measures of the kind. The Mining Ordinance was promulgated on the 1st July, 1925, and an amending Ordinance to regulate the exploitation of quarries was published as a Bill on the 16th November, 1925.

Tenders for a concession to win and market the mineral resources of the Dead Sea, were publicly invited by the Crown Agents on behalf of the Colonial Office in May; the awards had not been made at the end of the year.

The International Court of Justice of the Hague decided that the pre-war Ottoman concessions held by Mr. Mavrommatis, a Greek subject, for the generation and supply of electricity, supply of water and construction of tramways in the Jerusalem area were valid but should be adapted to the changed economic conditions. Experts were accordingly appointed by Mr. Mavrommatis and by His Majesty's Government for the purpose, and the modification of the concessions was accomplished at the end of the year.

With regard to the concession for the reclamation of the Huleh swamps, the period within which the Concessionaire was required to establish a company to work his concession elapsed, but an extension was granted to allow negotiations for the working of the concession to be brought to a conclusion.

2.Q. Has it been found necessary to arrange with the Jewish Agency to construct or operate any public works, services and utilities or to develop any of the natural resources of the country and, if so, under what circumstances?

A. The Jewish Agency has not been required directly to operate such works.

3.Q. Give a complete list of concessions and the names and nationalities of the concession holders.

A. The name of Mr. Mavrommatis, Greek subject, should be added to the list in the Report for 1923. See the reply to 1.

4.Q. Give the reports submitted to the Company meetings and the balance sheets of these undertakings, or, when such reports and balance sheets are not available, give all information relating to the subject, particularly the rate of interest and the uses made of
profits.

A. The latest financial statements of the Jaffa Electric Company and of the Palestine Salt Company are reprinted at the end of this Section of the Report.

5.Q. What provisions are made to secure economic equality as regards:--

(a) Concessions?
(b) Land tenure?
(c) Mining rights (in particular, rules in regard to prospecting)?
(d) Fiscal regime (direct and indirect taxation)?
(e) Customs regulations (imports, exports, transit)?

A. (a) and (b). There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1923.

(c) Under the Mining Ordinance the conditions which must be fulfilled by a person applying for a prospecting permit are:--

(i) literacy;
(ii) that he is over 18 years of age;
(iii) that he has not been convicted of an offence under the Ordinance;
(iv) that he has sufficient funds to carry out the prospecting work.

Applicants for exploration permits must possess or must employ persons possessing the requisite geological qualifications. The principle of equality will be similarly maintained in the amending Ordinance.

(d) and (e). The principle of economic equality has been maintained, no new provisions being necessary for this purpose.

6.Q. What regulations has the Mandatory Power made for the application of the clause providing "freedom of transit under equitable conditions"?

A. No such regulations were made in 1925.

7.Q. Have any Customs Agreements been made by virtue of Article 18? If so, give the text of such agreements.

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1923. A fresh Customs Agreement is being arranged with Syria.

IX.--HOLY PLACES.

1.Q. What measures have been taken for the assumption by the Mandatory of responsibility in connection with the Holy Places and religious buildings or sites, including the responsibility of preserving existing rights and of securing free access to the Holy Places, religious buildings and sites, and free exercise of worship?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1924.

2.Q. Which are the purely Moslem sacred shrines the immunities of which are guaranteed?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1923.

X.--FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE.

1.Q. What measures have been taken to assure freedom of conscience and religion?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1925. See under the Legal Section, [pages ] of this Report.

2.Q. Have any restrictions been made upon the free exercise of any form of worship in the interest of the maintenance of public order and morals?

A. There have been no such restrictions.

3.Q. What measures have been taken to assert the rights of communities to maintain their own schools for the education of their own members?

What educational requirements of a general nature are imposed by the Administration?

What measures have been taken to assure the exercise of such supervision over religious or other charitable bodies of all faiths or nationalities in Palestine as may be required for the maintenance of public order and good government?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1924.

XI.--MILITARY CLAUSES.

1.Q. What is the form of military organization and training?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply in the Report for 1924.

2.Q. Are there any police forces independent of the military charged with the defence of the territory?

What is the respective importance of these two forces? and the amount spent on each?

Racial and religious comparison of these two forces?

A. The Civil forces are the Police and the Palestine Gendarmerie. The present strength of the sections of the Palestine Gendarmerie at the end of the year was as follows:--

(i) British Section:

Officers .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 27
Other Ranks .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 442

All British. The force was considerably below strength during 1925, and its cost was approximately £E.162,000--the whole borne by British funds.

(ii) Palestinian Section:

Moslem.
Christian.
Jew.
Druze.
British.
Palestinian.
Officers ..
W.Os. .. ..
O.Rs. .. ..
4
--
316
9
9
41
--
--
101
--
--
9
9
9
--
4
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467

The approximate cost was £E.82,000--borne by Palestine funds.

There was no change during 1925 in the strength of the British garrison.

3.Q. Has there been any occasion for the Administration of Palestine to contribute to the cost of the maintenance of the military forces of the Mandatory Power?

If so to what extent?

A. No.

4.Q. Has the Mandatory exercised its right to use the roads, railways and ports of Palestine for the movement of armed forces and the carriage of fuel and supplies?

If so, to what budget has the expenditure been charged?

A. Yes, on account of the existing garrison in Palestine only. All expenditure involved has been defrayed by His Majesty's Government.

XII.--INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS.

1.Q. To what International Conventions has the Mandatory adhered on behalf of the Palestine Administration?

A. Since last Report: Date of Adhesion.

The International White Phosphorus 25th August, 1925.
Convention of 1926.

The provisions of the International Convention concerning the White Slave Traffic were applied in the Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance.

2.Q. What steps have been taken by the Mandatory to co-operate with the League of Nations in their struggle against disease, including diseases of plants and animals?

A. The steps described in the Report for 1924 continue to be taken; for particulars see the Health Section and also [pages ] of this Report.

The White Phosphorus Matches Prevention Ordinance and the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance implement the adhesion of Palestine to the International White Phosphorus Convention and to the International Opium Convention.

The measures described in the reply for 1924 as taken to combat diseases of animals have been continued.

The Anti-malarial Commission of the League of Nations visited Palestine.

XIII.--ANTIQUITIES.

Q. Has the Mandatory enacted a law of antiquities according to the provisions laid down in Article 2 of the Mandate?

Give the text.

A. See reply in Report for 1924. The revised Ordinance is still under consideration.

XIV.--OFFICIAL LANGUAGES.

1.Q. Have the three official languages been used simultaneously and on an equal footing in legislative and administrative documents and in the Courts?

If not, what languages are used?

2.Q. To what observations does the application of this system give rise?

A. 1 and 2. There is nothing to add to the replies in the Report for 1924.

XV.--HOLY DAYS.

Q. What days are recognised as holy days by the various communities?

A. There is nothing to add to the reply given in the Reports for 1923 and 1924.

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