UNITED NATIONS CONCILIATION COMMISSION FOR PALESTINE
OF A MEETING BETWEEN THE CONCILIATION COMMISSION
AND THE DELEGATION OF THE STATE OF ISRAEL
Held at the Palais des Nations, Geneva,
on Wednesday 29 March 1950, at 5 p.m.
The preparation of the memorandum having taken the Commission some time, it was only natural to assume that the Israeli Government, for its part, would wish to examine it at its leisure. Accordingly, the Commission was not requesting an immediate reply, or even a reply at a very early date.
The work of the Commission would not be suspended, but the Chairman and the Principal Secretary would shortly leave for Jerusalem, and planned to make contact with certain Governments, particularly that of Israel. The Commission hoped to resume contact with the Israeli delegation as from 17 April next, when all the members of the Commission would again be meeting at Geneva to receive the Director of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency and the members of the Advisory Commission when they passed through, and it trusted that that delegation would then be able to make known its Government’s reply to the memorandum.
After careful consideration, the Commission had deemed it inappropriate to publicise its action for the moment, and thought it preferable to keep the text of the memorandum confidential. The question of its publication should be jointly examined later.
He would be grateful if the representative of the State of Israel would draw his Government’s attention to the importance from the point of view of the success of its work which the Commission attached to that memorandum.
Mr. RAFAEL (Israel) assured the Chairman that he would not fail to transmit the memorandum to his Government and would inform the Commission in due course of the reply thereto.
He took that opportunity to inform the Commission that the Government had studied the somewhat alarming situation which had arisen as a result of the refusal by the Arab States to engage in any negotiations, and of the intensified rate of rearmament in their countries. His delegation would shortly submit a note to the Commission on that problem which it should not, however, regard as a reply to its memorandum but as a separate communication.
He asked the Commission whether, when it resumed, its work it could be assumed that the Arab States would, be represented at Geneva by persons really entitled to negotiate. He understood that the representatives of those States had so far not been granted powers authorizing them to engage in negotiations; it would be desirable that, next month, their instructions should empower them to act as negotiators.
The Government of Israel, he added, would be happy to welcome the Chairman and was fully prepared to make contact with him; he wished the members of the Commission a good journey.
The CHAIRMAN said he was very anxious to get in touch with the Government of Israel, which he planned to do shortly after his arrival in Jerusalem.
With regard to the powers conferred on the delegations accredited to the Commission, he explained to the Israeli representative that that question had not escaped the Commission’s notice. If the method of operation proposed by it in the memorandum was accepted by the two parties, the Arab delegations would obviously possess full powers. Thus the question might be said to depend on the manner in which the Governments concerned received the Commission’s memorandum. The Commission hoped for a favourable reception.
In reply to the Chairman, Mr. RAFAEL (Israel) explained that the communication from the Israeli Government to which he had referred would be transmitted to the Commission very shortly, and in any case before the Chairman left for Jerusalem.
The meeting rose at 6 p.m.
(1) This communication has been issued as Document IS/45.
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