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U N I T E D N A T I O N S

General Assembly
Distr.
RESTRICTED

A/AC.21/SR.27
30 January 1948

ENGLISH ONLY



SUMMARY RECORD OF THE TWENTY-SEVENTH MEETING OF
THE UNITED NATIONS PALESTINE COMMISSION

Lake Success, New York

Friday, 30 January 1948, at 2.30 p.m.




Present:
Chairman:Mr. LISICKY(Czechoslovakia)
Members:Mr. Medina(Bolivia)
Mr. Federspiel (Denmark)
Mr. Morgan(Panama)
Mr. Francisco(Philippines)
Secretariat:Mr. Bunche(Secretary)

CONSULTATION WITH THE REPRESENTATIVE OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED KINGDOM

Sir, Alexander Cadogan, together with his two assistants, Mr. J. Fletcher-Cooke and Mr. Trafford Smith, were invited by the Chairman to take seats at the table, Sir Alexander Cadogan’s statement, the questions put by members on points arising from his statement, and the answers by Sir. Alexander Cadogan and Mr. Fletcher-Cooke are reproduced in extenso as follows:

The CHAIRMAN: As the Commission is aware, on 19 January we sent to Sir Alexander Cadogan a number of questions which were especially connected with the Security problem and the problem of Administrative Responsibilities of our Commission. I understand that Sir Alexander is now in a position to give us the answers of his Government to at least a number of these questions.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, I can give answers to most of them; but there are still one or two in regard to which I am awaiting further material.

Would the Commission desire that I take the questions in the order in which the Commission put them?

The CHAIRMAN: I think that this would be most practical, because we should then be able to follow them in our list.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Undoubtedly all the members of the Commission have the list in front of them. If this is not so, I can read out the question before giving the answer. Is that preferred?

The CHAIRMAN: Yes, that would be preferable for the verbatim record.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The questions are divided into two categories. The first relates mainly to security.

The first question is:

To that question I have the following reply: Shall I do through all the answers first, or will you stop me for comment as I give them?

The CHAIRMAN: What is the preference of the members of the Commission? Should we ask immediately any supplementary question after every answer, or is it preferred to hear first the entire series of answers?

Mr. FRANCISCO (Philippines): I leave it to the decision of the Chairman. Perhaps because there will be many answers it would be preferable to stop after every answer and ask the members of the Commission for any supplementary questions.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I might like to ask a question after the first answer, but I think it would be better to hear all the answers, because some of the other answers may serve as answers to the question I should like to raise now.

The CHAIRMAN: If I understand correctly the position of the United Kingdom representative, this consultation - determined from the recommendation of the General Assembly - in practice should be reduced to a simple communication on behalf of the United Kingdom Government to the Commission.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes.

The CHAIRMAN: Therefore, it may be argued about the exact significance of the word “consultation”.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The question certainly was, “In what manner does the United Kingdom Government propose to consult with the Commission…” My reply to that is that we give the Commission such information as we can.

The Commission may comment and raise further questions on that. I can report to my Government any observations which are made or any difficulties that are seen. To that extent I hope you should think that this amounts to consultation.

The CHAIRMAN: That is to say that this communication about the timetable on the withdrawal is not a final decision of your Government but is a statement of the position which is subject to being reconsidered in the light of possible observations on behalf of the Commission. Is that the point?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): It may be subject to any comment that the Chairman or any other Member of the Commission may wish to make.

Question number two stated:

My reply is the following: The CHAIRMAN: May I ask Sir Alexander about the Trans-Jordan Frontier Force? Is it a force which is composed partly of Palestinian inhabitants and partly of Trans-Jordan inhabitants?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I am not sure as to the exact composition. I should observe, however, that it is an Imperial force. It is called the Trans-Jordan Frontier Force.

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): The Trans-Jordan Frontier Force is a volunteer force which is open to anyone who wishes to enlist. In point of fact the personnel is composed mainly of Arabs, Palestinian Arabs, and even Arabs from Syria, Circassians, and a great number of military-minded persons from all over the Middle East.

The CHAIRMAN: This force is a sort of Foreign Legion?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE: Yes, in a sense.

The CHAIRMAN: Can we expect that when this force will be disbanded, the members of this force who are not from Palestine will be repatriated to their respective countries?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I am afraid that we do not have information here as to the intention of our authorities in that respect. We can ask.

The CHAIRMAN: I think you agree that there may be some complications if these people who are not from Palestine and who are professional soldiers should be left there?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I think it is correct to say that they all found their own way there to be recruited. Many of them, although not Palestinian citizens, have lived in Palestine for some time as residents.

The CHAIRMAN: The position is that all the members were recruited in Palestine.

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Yes.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): How have the expenditures for the establishment of the Trans-Jordan Frontier Force, and particularly for its equipment, been borne? Have they been borne by the Palestinian Administration or by the British Government?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Regionally there were certain small expenditures before the war - I think 1937 or 1938 - which amounted to about 35,000 pounds per annum which were borne by the Palestine Government Funds.

Since then - and as a result of the war - the expenditure has increased considerably. I think it is now somewhat over 2 million pounds a year, all the additional part of which is borne by His Majesty’s Government, inasmuch as the Force forms part of the Imperial Forces.

The CHAIRMAN: They are considered as British Forces and not as Palestinian Forces?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): They are considered as a British Force.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): The cost of the upkeep of the Force has been borne by the British Government?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE: It was borne by the British Government. Speaking from memory, I should say that this small figure of 35,000 pounds which was paid by the Palestinian Government before the war is still being paid; but that is almost entirely lost in the total cost of 2 million pounds all of which is paid by His Majesty’s Government.

The CHAIRMAN: Is that small sum which is still being paid set aside for a definite use?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): It was the amount paid before the Force was expanded to meet wartime requirements.

The CHAIRMAN: What is the present strength of this Force?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I am not sure.

The CHAIRMAN: Approximately.

M. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I know they spent close to 2 million pounds a year on it.

I do not know the extent of the actual personnel.

The CHAIRMAN: Could we have this information?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Yes.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The third question was the following:

The answer is the following: The CHAIRMAN: Until termination of the Mandate?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes.

Question four is:

The answer is the following: The CHAIRMAN: Does it cover even the preparatory steps to the formation of this militia for the period after the termination of the Mandate?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I do not know about the preparatory steps or what they would consist of, but the wording which I was given is that “My Government cannot allow the formation of such forces prior to the termination of the Mandate”.

The following question, question five, deals with, the point just raised:

The reply is as follows: The CHAIRMAN: I may say that this request will be forthcoming in a very short time.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): It will receive consideration.

Question six reads:

The reply is: Question seven reads: Question seven can be answered together with question eight.

Question eight is the following:

The answers to questions seven and eight is the following: I do not have that Directive as yet, but I hope to have it very soon. When I receive it I will communicate the contents at once.

The CHAIRMAN: That is to say that the answers to those two questions are reserved.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): May we understand that this will also include the answer to the second part of the first question, which I don think we received - the definition of what is meant by the “occupation”?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): That is more or less met by this answer which I gave you. I said, “On the termination of the Mandate, the General Officer Commanding will define by proclamation those areas in which he may need to exercise his over-riding military jurisdiction.”

The CHAIRMAN: I think it also means a matter of interpretation. Does it refer to an area? Under occupation? Is it necessary that this area should be really occupied or only held under the possibility of immediate occupation in case of disturbances; etc.?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The directive may throw further light on that.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I think we could wait for that.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I shall get it soon, and if it does not meet all the Commission’s points, we shall have to make further enquiries.

Question nine reads:

The answer is as follows: The CHAIRMAN: This refers to the areas which will still be held under occupation?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, it refers to an attack on the British forces or their communications, wherever they may be.

The CHAIRMAN: It refers only to the British forces - not to the territory held under occupation. I am referring to after the termination.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): After the termination of the Mandate we shall protect only the areas occupied by the British forces and the lines of communication required for them.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): Would that correspond with the areas for which proclamations would be issued by the Commanding Officer?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, I presume that this is so.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): With reference to this matter, did you state “an attack on the areas occupied by the British forces,” or “attacks actually on the British forces”?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I said, “on the British forces”. I presume that they will be more or less coincident.

I suppose that the General Commanding Officer will, in his proclamation or successive proclamations, indicate areas occupied. I presume that an aggression against British forces would mean an aggression against such areas; but we might try to get that clearly.

The CHAIRMAN: I think it would be useful to clarify that.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I shall continue with the second set of questions which relate to the Commission’s Discharge of its Administrative Responsibilities.

The first question as follows:

The answer is as follows:. Mr. MORGAN (Panama): In connection with Sir Alexander’s previous answer, I should like to ask whether, in case of an invasion of the territory, there would be any British troops who would assume the responsibility for defending that area.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): That is a very difficult question for me to answer. The question that was put to me was with regard to what steps we should take in case of armed aggression against Palestine territory. I gave the answer in regard to that covering both up to the termination of the Mandate and the period thereafter. Regarding the period thereafter, we should only be prepared to resist an aggression if it was committed against British forces remaining in Palestine or their lines of communication.

The CHAIRMAN: I think the answer is clear.

I may say to my colleague from Panama that the implications of this answer are for the Commission to consider; but the answer itself is clear.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The second question is as follows:

The reply is as follows: The CHAIRMAN: Perhaps Sir Alexander knows something which was not expressly stated in the answer, but was a quite natural consequence of this answer. May the Commission know the reasons for this attitude on the part of the United Kingdom Government?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The reasons have in general already been stated. We cannot have two concurrent overlapping authorities in Palestine. We also feel - and are advised - that the arrival of the Commission in Palestine may be the signal for wide-spread disturbances. Therefore, we wish the overlap to be as short as possible.

The CHAIRMAN: This is for security reasons, because I think that the other consideration does not arise, since the Commission has taken note of the fact that so long as the Mandatory regime stands, there is to be no governmental functions for the Commission.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): No, there will be no actual conflict of authority. It is principally because of the security reason.

The CHAIRMAN: But this also applies more or less to this fortnight’s overlap. In strict logic it means that the Commission should not go there so long as the Mandatory regime is the authority in Palestine.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I suppose that my Government does feel that its withdrawal, which my Government contemplates and wishes to carry out as smoothly and expeditiously as possible, might become seriously delayed if the disturbances began sometime before the withdrawal could make progress.

The CHAIRMAN: That is the considered opinion of the United Kingdom Government?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): That is the answer which I have received to the question put by the Commission.

The CHAIRMAN: Should the Commission consider this answer as a final stand?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I am afraid that I have no indication of the likelihood of its being revised.

The CHAIRMAN: In any event, if the Commission should be of the opinion that it is indispensable for the Commission’s work in Palestine to begin earlier and the opinion of the Commission should be put before your Government, your Government would be ready to reconsider this matter?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I am sure that my Government would reconsider it, and it would be my duty - if the Commission expressed that opinion - to put that opinion before my Government, and I am sure that my Government would consider it. I cannot go a step further to encourage you to think that my Government would change that decision, because I have no authority to say so.

The CHAIRMAN: However as a matter still under negotiation, it is still a possibility to discuss it with the United Kingdom Government?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Certainly. If the Commission wishes to express an opinion on that, it will be my duty to transmit that opinion to my Government.

The CHAIRMAN: Perhaps I may state my reason for asking this. My reason is that, if your reply should be considered as a final stand and with no hope for any possible change as a result of further discussions, the Commission would be bound to refer the matter to the Security Council. However, if there should be still a possibility of further discussions, then we would be bound to discuss this matter with Sir Alexander or with his Government.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): We can only try it. If it should be the firm view of the Commission that this period is impossible or too short, I could report at once to my Government that this is the view of the Commission. I do not say that there is any hope of my Government changing its mind. At the same time, I do not say there is no hope. However, this is the answer which I received.

I shall certainly report, if the Commission authorizes me to make such a statement, that this is its view - that this period or time places the Commission in an impossible position.

The CHAIRMAN: Do my colleagues agree that the position of the Commission is that we consider this period of a fortnight before the termination of the Mandate for our arrival in Palestine as being unacceptable to the Commission if the Commission is to perform its task?

Mr. FRANCISCO (Philippines): In regard to that matter I reserve my position.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I think that, in view of the information which we have, this period will be inadequate; however, I understand that the reasons given for this short delay are entirely security reasons. I should think that our consideration should move in the direction of trying to find a change in the security situation which would give the Commission the possibility of discussing this matter further.

The CHAIRMAN: I am afraid that the change in the security situation may apply only for the period after the termination of the Mandate. I say this, because before the termination of the Mandate, it is the position of the United Kingdom Government that they alone are exclusively responsible for the maintenance of law and order. Perhaps because one of the members of the Commission has reserved his position with regard to this matter, we shall not immediately prepare a communication on that point. Perhaps Sir Alexander may only take with him the impression from this meeting that he will receive a formal communication on this matter subsequently.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): If the Commission should have the possibility of proceeding to Palestine on an earlier date than that contemplated by the United Kingdom Government, would this mean that the Mandate would be terminated on such earlier date?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I am afraid that I cannot answer that question at the moment, but I can refer it to my Government.

The answer is as follows: I think I might add that, as I understand it, accommodations are extremely difficult in Palestine. As far as the Government is concerned, the premises owned or occupied by them are all in use and will be in use probably up to the termination of the Mandate, so that accommodations present physical difficulties. As stated in this answer, we should certainly give all possible assistance to any staff which the Commission contemplates sending out in advance to help solve these particular problems.

The CHAIRMAN: Dr. Bunche calls my attention to a memorandum which we have just received; there is the question of only one or two members of the Commission’s secretariat going to Palestine before the arrival of the whole Commission. Should this matter be really limited only to one or two members?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I think that this limitation was put in words by us. However; I think that if the Commission would indicate its wishes in the matter and its requirements, I shall undertake to submit them.

The CHAIRMAN: It should not be considered as a strict limitation.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I do not think so. This is the entire answer which I received. If the Commission decides that there is work to be done which will require a larger staff, I shall certainly send that information to my Government; if my Government is prepared to admit more than two, I suppose they will go beyond that modest number. Perhaps, after consultation with the members of the Commission, the Secretary will let me know or give me some idea of the number they want to send. I am referring to the staff number. Therefore, the Secretary might give me this information to the course of the next day or two.

Question four is as follows:

The answer is as follows: In other words, the answer to that question is “yes,” but it is subject to that condition.

The fifth question is as follows:

The answer is the following: The CHAIRMAN: It appears from this answer that the Councils could be established but could not carry out their functions until after the termination of the Mandate.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United. Kingdom): Yes.’

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I think this requires a little clarification because under the Resolution certain preliminary functions are given to the Provisional Councils of Government, particularly with respect to the question asked before about recruitment and training of an armed militia. There may be a number of other questions. Should we understand this to mean that no administrative authority - in the sense of assuming administrative responsibility - could be allowed to the Provisional Councils, but that they would be permitted to function in the sense of preparing to take over their functions on the termination of the Mandate?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I think that question requires a little clarification. I do not know what the representative of Denmark means by the expression, “preparing to take over.”

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): In the first place they would be functioning in the sense of recruiting the staff of the militia or the members of the militia. They would have to take certain steps to prepare for the machinery of elections, and in general they would have to set up the framework of the organization of a new state. In the technical sense, they could do that without assuming administrative functions.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I think that that is contained in the answer. Isn’t it more or less, “Subject to its overriding responsibility for the maintenance of law and order, the Mandatory Power would not impede any preliminary measures taken by the Commission with this object in view, although such Councils could not exercise any authority prior to the date of the termination of the Mandate.”?

It is very difficult to define, for instance, whether it is a question of providing for the ultimate formation of a militia. I suppose nothing can prevent them from looking around and considering who they might appoint to a staff. In that way they would be preparing to assume their responsibilities on the termination of the Mandate. Of course, I suppose they could not actually proceed to form staffs or anything of that kind. They could not proceed to exercise any actual administrative authority. I suppose there would be a great deal of preparatory work which they could accomplish in the way of looking for personnel, making their plans, etc.

Naturally, I think you would not be stopped from doing that.

However, I do not know to what extent that would be.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): The representative of Denmark just made reference to conscription. I remember that, in answer to question number four, Sir Alexander stated that the British Government would not allow any conscription.

The CHAIRMAN: I think that you mean the enlistment of volunteers.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): Yes.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I think they could make their plans, look around for some individuals, and get in touch with them. The answer to the fourth question in that first series was as follows:

“My Government cannot allow the formation of such forces prior to the termination of the Mandate.” I suppose that this means the actual embodiment of the forces; but, in reply to the question which the Danish member of the Commission put to me about preparatory work, I propose they could accomplish a considerable amount anyway.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I suppose the United Kingdom Government would be prepared to discuss where actual enforcement ends and preparatory work begins?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): It would be a difficult thing to define this matter to the last detail.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): I think that this question now under discussion had been cleared up by the reply to the fifth question. What is involved is the organization of the Provisional Councils of Government and the militia. These are so involved in order that we may start functioning on the determined date.

The CHAIRMAN: What is involved here is the organization of the establishment of Provisional Councils of Government, since it is understood that these Councils cannot exercise any governmental function so long as the mandatory regime exists. That understanding is the position of the United Kingdom Government?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): Does the answer to that question mean that it is already clear in our minds that we shall not be able to comply with paragraph 4 of part B of the Resolution of the General Assembly which states that, if by 1 April 1948 Provisional Councils of Government cannot be selected for either of the States or, if selected, cannot carry out its functions, the Commission shall communicate that fact to the Security Council for such action, etc.?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): In point of fact I think they would not be able to carry that out.

The CHAIRMAN: We may take that for granted now, without waiting for 1 April, because it is a necessary consequence of the fact that, until the termination of the Mandate, no other authority is admitted by the Mandatory Power.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I think that this will probably require a great deal of clarification. Therefore, I think we could postpone this matter for a subsequent discussion, because the functions of a government are today very different from the traditional ideas of the functions of a government. I shall just mention a small point like the following: that the food situation will have to by contemplated, and the question might arise whether the Provisional Council of Government would have to enter into contract for food supplies and other similar items which, in the modern sense, would not be a function of the government, but which would obviously be a necessity. I think that we can come down to a definition of the limitations and functions of the government in further discussions.

The CHAIRMAN: Yes, this is true because it is necessary to discuss it in detail with all its implications: However, it is important for us to know how the principal stand of the United Kingdom Government.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): The sixth question is: “How will the Commission have access to the titles and information of the Palestine Administration prior to the termination of the Mandate?”

The answer is: “It is suggested that the Commission or its staff should take up this question on arrival in Palestine.”

The CHAIRMAN: Can we conclude from this answer that the Palestine Administration is ready to allow the Commission and its staff access to the files?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom); I think so, yes.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): Do you mean on the Commission’s arrival in Palestine or on the arrival of the members of the staff of the Commission?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): As I say, it is suggested that the Commission or its staff should take up this question on arrival in Palestine. I imagine that those words “or its staff” refer to the staff which may go out in advance.

Question seven is as follows: “Does the Mandatory Power intend to take preliminary steps in consultation with the Commission, prior to the termination of the Mandate, to partition the functions ands personnel of the Palestine Government Departments in order to facilitate a smooth and orderly transfer of authority?”

The answer is that for practical reasons the Mandatory Power cannot undertake to reorganize the functions or personnel of departments during the closing stages of the Mandate. As the Commission has already been informed, it is not expected that there will be any Arab staff who are prepared to work for the Commission after the date of termination of the Mandate.

The CHAIRMAN: May we hear what the prospects are with regard to the British staff?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): That is answered in another question.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): Will all salaries be discontinued from that date?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I think that will also be answered in a subsequent reply.

With regard to Question eight, which relates to the numbers and rank in each Department of the Palestine Government of (a) British, (b) Arab, (c) Jewish, I am afraid I cannot yet provide the information, but I shall get it as soon as possible. It has been promised to me, and I am also told that any significant changes in those figures will be made known from time to time.

The CHAIRMAN: This is only factual information.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I do not have it yet, but do not think it will take long to get it.

Again, with regard, to Question nine, concerning the liquidation, disposal or encumbering of the assets of the Palestine Government, such as the accumulated treasury surplus, the proceeds of Government bond issues, State lands or any other asset, I am afraid that I have not got the further information requisite, but I hope I shall soon have it.

Question ten: “Is the delegation of the United Kingdom in a position to give the Commission an account of the present food situation in Palestine, and particularly of any arrangements for the importation of essential food during the next few months?”

I have already given some information to the Commission’s staff. There again, I am afraid that I have not got the further information requisite, but I am told that it will be available in the near future.

I am afraid the same applies to Question eleven, relating to plans which would ensure that in the transfer of responsibility to the United Nations Commission the essential measures of the Palestine Administration for securing sufficient food supplies for all the population of Palestine can continue in operation.

In that case also, I expect instructions in the near future.

Question twelve: “Is the United Kingdom Government prepared to enter into consultation with the Commission at an early date with regard to the measures to be taken to ensure the continuation of the machinery of public information, essential to the fulfilment of the Commission’s tasks?”

I am not quite sure fully what is meant by the expression “machinery of public information.” I assume that the Commission will wish to make arrangements to continue the operation of the broadcasting station now operated by the Palestine Broadcasting Service, which is a department of the Government of Palestine, but I do not know what else the Commission had in mind when they spoke of the “machinery of public information.”

The CHAIRMAN: That had reference in the first place to broadcasting facilities and direct telephonic communication with the coast, and technical things of that nature. My colleagues and I are not too familiar with those matters and we shall, perhaps, send you a technical paper on the subject prepared by the technical experts of the Secretariat.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): They could give us a questionnaire, I think, which could be dealt with by experts.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): Is the answer to that question “yes”?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, certainly. The question only was as to whether we would be prepared to enter into consultation.

Question thirteen: “On the appointed day for the termination of the Mandate, is it the Mandatory Power’s intention to turn over to the Commission the whole complex of Governmental responsibilities for the whole of Palestine without any reservations?”

The answer is: It will be upon to the Commission on the date of the termination of the Mandate to assume full responsibility for government in the whole of Palestine, subject only to the over-riding military jurisdiction of the General Officer Commanding in areas to be specified by him. Details of the powers of the General Officer Commanding will be brought to the notice of the Commission as soon as they are available; that refers to the directive.

Mr. FRANCISCO (Philippines): Is there any airfield in Palestine?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Yes, there are at least two large airfields, a civil airport at Lydda and the RAF airfield at Aqir about which I believe certain details have been brought to your notice.

The CHAIRMAN: Is the airport at Aqir of approximately the same size and does it have the same possibilities as the Lydda airport?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I do not know if it is the same size. It will certainly take very large planes; any planes that are likely to be required for use in Palestine can certainly land there.

The CHAIRMAN: Do you mean planes such as might be used for transport between Palestine and London?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Certainly, as far as I am aware.

Mr. FRANCISCO (Philippines): What is the intention of the United Kingdom Government with regard to this airport? Does it intend to maintain this airport for the use of the Commission, or is the airport going to be destroyed at the termination of the Mandate?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): As regards Lydda airport, that airport is, of course, subject to certain claims which, I think, His Majesty’s Government has in respect of improvements carried out during the war. It is the property of the Government of Palestine. The other airport at Aqir is the property of the Royal Air Force, that is, His Majesty’s Government, and unless the Commission wishes other arrangements to be made, in the ordinary way His Majesty’s Government would take steps to dispose of that airport, possibly by merely calling it as land.

The CHAIRMAN: Does that mean that not only the ground structure, but also the land belongs to His Majesty’s Government?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I am almost certain that the land belongs to His Majesty’s Government.

Mr. FRANCISCO (Philippines): Do I understand that His Majesty’s Government would entertain negotiations with the Commission for the preservation of these airports while the Commission is in Palestine?

The CHAIRMAN: I must draw your attention to the fact that we have received a letter from the United Kingdom delegation indicating their readiness to negotiate this matter.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Question fourteen: “What is the timetable and what are the details of the United Kingdom’s plan of withdrawal with respect to matters of civil administration?”

The answer is: Civil administration will be maintained throughout Palestine as far as the security situation permits until the date of the termination of the Mandate. As the Commission has already been informed the responsibility of the Mandatory Power will be relinquished a whole on that date.

His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom would like to take this opportunity of making clear to the Commission its views as to the position of Palestinian staff after the date of termination of the Mandate. As the Government of Palestine, the present employer of all British and Palestinian staff will cease to exist on 15 May, all appointments, contracts and agreements with that employer must, therefore, be terminated by that date. It will be open to the Commission or to any successor authority to offer employment to any personnel thus released. There can be no question of the outgoing authority handing over to the Commission their former servants under any obligation, by the terms of their unemployment, to continue service with the Commission. In those circumstances, it is essential that the Commission should announce at an early date the terms which it is proposed to offer to Palestinian officers and also to those British officers who may decide to terminate their appointments with the British Administration so that the Commission may be given information as to what personnel are likely to be available in Palestine.

The CHAIRMAN: Does that refer to the civil servants now in the Palestinian Administration?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, if a British civil servant terminates his contract with the Government and leaves the British service, there would, of course, be no objection to his volunteering, if he wishes to do so. But I think that a good many of the officials there are members of the unified service and would probably, for the most part, be able to take service under His Majesty’s Government somewhere else. Consequently, it is not to be expected that very many of them would wish to terminate their service and volunteer. There may be some, but I do not know.

The CHAIRMAN: Does that mean that the position now is that they are only seconded to the Palestine Administration but that they are still under the Colonial Office?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, they are employed in Palestine for the moment; it is existing post.

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): The position is briefly as follows. The British staff employed by the government of Palestine falls into two categories. Certain officers, including, of course, all the British section of the Palestine Police - that is, the rank and file - are on a contractual basis with the Government of Palestine. A number of senior officers also including, incidentally, the Inspector-General of Police himself, the Director of Civil Aviation and one or two other departmental heads, are all under contract to the Government of Palestine and have no other connection with His Majesty’s Government.

A large number of officers falls into the second category. They are officers who are members of various unified Colonial services, such as the Colonial Administrative Service, the Colonial Medical Service, and so on. They have been posted, in the past, to Palestine and are in receipt now of their salaries from Palestine, but they are liable to be posted elsewhere.

The position, therefore, is that when the Mandate is terminated, any British officer who is employed under contract or agreement with the Palestine Government automatically ceases to be so employed and he will be available to consider an offer from the Commission or any successor authority for employment there.

As regards the other officers who are members of this unified service, arrangements are being made whereby any such officer may put his name down to be posted elsewhere, or he may cease his connection with the Crown, retire and take his pension benefits. If he does that, he, equally with the officers on a contractual basis, would be available for re-employment in Palestine.

The position as regards the Palestinian officers is that, of course, all their contracts and appointments will be terminated and all of those will be available, in theory, to receive offers of employment from the Commission.

The CHAIRMAN: What you have just explained about the British officers does it apply only to the British staff of the Palestine Police Force?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): With this exception: all the other ranks, that is, up to the rank of sergeant, are all contract officers whose employment would automatically come to an end with the termination of the Mandate. Some of the officers of the Palestinian Police Force are on contract. Most of them are permanent pensionable members of the Colonial Unified Police Service. Thus, it would be quite impossible to absorb into other colonies all the police forces in Palestine. A number of them would have to have their appointments permanently terminated; that is to say, they cannot be posted anywhere else and they again would be available.

The CHAIRMAN: Is that why, they might be available to enter the service of the administration?

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): This is not a point I want to raise here, but to which I just want to call attention. I think the reply the United Kingdom Government involves a very deep question of principle, and that is, whether the State of Palestine, as we now know it, comes to an end when the Mandate is terminated; which, I gather, is the view of the United Kingdom Government. I would like to know if this is the right construction. I believe the construction is that the State Palestine continues with or without separation, but that the conditions under which possibly a very large portion of the staff have been engaged, have been changed so much that their terms of employment may be rightly terminated. I think we should take up this matter for further discussion before we conclude it.

The CHAIRMAN: Yes, but that is a consideration of a legal aspect.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): Will we take aver with or without the Administration?

The CHAIRMAN: The Mandate will be terminated. There will be no more Mandate.

Mr. Morgan (Panama): Yes, a mandate is something different from the Administration; we want to know about it.

The CHAIRMAN: After termination of the Mandate, there is no Mandatory Power and no more Administration established by the Mandatory Power. I think that is the position taken His Majesty’s Government.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): It might involve the question of what Administration was there when the Mandate started.

The CHAIRMAN: There was none, because the Turkish Administration left with the Turkish Army and the military occupation forces.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): But there must have been some sort of civil administration before that.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): Could I ask for an answer to my question?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): It is a difficult question to answer. The Mandate will come to an end. The Administration which existed under the Mandate will be in the condition in which I have attempted to describe to the Commission. A great many of the officials - probably all the Arab officials - will refuse to serve. I suppose the Commission will try to return as much as it can of the Administration existing on the date of termination. It will remain to be seen how much it can preserve of that Administration, how it can reinforce it and redevelop it.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): According to an answer given by Sir Alexander Cadogan at a previous meeting, his Government would be disposed to lend us its co-operation in order to enable us to organize the necessary service.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United. Kingdom): I have indicated in the various replies which given to the questions put to me, the extent to which we can co-operate and the various limitations on our cooperation.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): I do not mean to say that the Provisional Councils of Government will start to function before the Mandate is terminated, but we have to organize them and prepare civil and military services.

Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): We had some discussion of that in relation to former questions. The Commission, I suppose, have to make certain preliminary plans and even, perhaps, proceed to certain preparatory action before the termination of the Mandate. I have indicated some of the limitations which my Government would put upon that, but I think that within those limitations, we may resolve by discussion and consultation a method of helping the Commission to fulfil its functions when the time comes.

The CHAIRMAN: This is a matter for detailed discussion in the course of negotiations.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Question fifteen: “Is the Mandatory Power prepared, in view of paragraph 1 of Section B, Part I of the Assembly Resolution, to include in the assistance which it may render to the Palestine Commission the temporary secondment to essential posts in Palestine of any of the personnel in the Palestine Administration for service under the Commission during the transitional period?”

The answer which I think has already emerged from our discussion is that British personnel cannot be seconded to the staff of the United Nations Commission for service in Palestine because His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom has frequently made it clear that it is unable to provide any part of the machinery of implementation. It will, of course, be open to any British officers who do not intend to remain, in the service of the Crown to volunteer for service with the Commission.

Question sixteen: “What measures are planned by the Mandatory Power to secure the transfer of the files and archives of the Palestine Government to the Commission, and, inter alia, what measures are planned by the Mandatory Power, to preserve and turn over to the Commission the records of land surveys and land settlement .1.4 the archives of the Palestine Government?”

The answer to that to similar to the answer which I already gave to an earlier question and that is that the Commission or its staff will no doubt wish to take up this question on its arrival in Palestine. I understand that to mean, that, of course, if the staff does go before the Commission, it will be able to take up that question immediately its arrival.

Question seventeeen: “After the termination of the Mandate, what functions or responsibilities will he discharged by the British forces in the areas still occupied by them, with respect to: (a) maintaining public services b) civil administration?’’

I am afraid that I cannot answer that at the moment. I am told that the directive to the General Officer Commanding which I have been promised and which you shall have as soon as I get it, will provide answers to that question.

The CHAIRMAN: We have completed the list of questions.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): May I ask that you allow Mr. Fletcher-Cooke to raise two points which I think should be considered?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): In one of the documents submitted to the Commission, reference was made to certain legislation which the Government of Palestine has under consideration in connection with the relaxation of central government control of powers and functions of municipalities. I have a little further information on that point and also a question to ask the Commission, if I may.

The information is that the bill providing for the relaxation and suspension of certain controls over municipal corporations has been drafted and printed, and that they are hoping to send copies to us from Palestine on 26 January. It is being considered in Palestine that they do not propose to proceed with the enactment of this ordinance until the Commission has had the opportunity of commenting on it if it so wishes.

Therefore, if it is agreeable to the Chairman, as soon as this daft is received, I shall see that it is sent to you if the Commission does wish to consider it. If, on the other hand, the Commission does not wish to consider the matter; they will proceed in Palestine with the enactment of the bill. Perhaps you could give me some indication this time as to the Commission’s desire in the matter.

The CHAIRMAN: I think our duty to see it. Perhaps Mr. Federspiel would be ready to take this matter up with the British Delegation.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL: Yes.

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): The second point relates to the postal administration The Postmaster General had advised the Government of Palestine that since the Palestine postal administration is represented by the United Kingdom as a contracting party at the International Postal Union, its withdrawal will have to be notified to the Union. Any future postal administration can adhere to the Union by notifying the government of the Swiss Confederation, which, in its turn, advises the Governments of all f countries of the Postal Union. In these circumstances, and in view of conditions prevailing in Palestine at the present time, I have been asked to bring it to the notice of the Commission that the Government of Palestine is intending to inform the Postal Union in the early part of February, in order to have the information conveyed to the various countries which are signatories to that convention, that they will not be able to guarantee the continuation of postal services after the date of the termination of the Mandate. They are, in fact, giving notice of a possible disruption in those services after 15 May.

The CHAIRMAN: Does this mean that the postal administration, as part of the administration of the Mandatory Power, will give this notice? Does it mean that they will no longer be responsible for the postal services in Palestine after the termination the Mandate;?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Yes. This is merely to bring the matter to your notice because presumably whatever steps the Commission may take to arrange for the postal administration, it will, I take it, have to inform the Postal Union of whatever it is able to do in that respect.

The CHAIRMAN: I think that our legal expert must look into the legal position from the point of view of international law; in any event, this matter will be taken up by us also.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): I should like to make one comment. It seems rather curious that the postmaster general of the Palestine Government should do more than to inform the Postal Union of the discontinuation of the postal services of the Palestine Government. It seems to be going a bit further, to sort of predict a disruption of the postal services, although that may be predicted. I think that is a matter for the Commission, which would naturally step into the obligations to the International Postal Union Palestine Government.

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): Would you like me to suggest to the Government of Palestine that its notification to the Postal Union should take the form, as regards the present administration, that cannot be responsible after 15 May.

The CHAIRMAN: I interpreted it only this way

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): Its seems to me that the Mandatory Power should communicate the matter in writing to the Commission, in order that the Commission may take appropriate measures to assure the continuance of postal services in Palestine.

The CHAIRMAN: I think the verbatim record of the discussion in this regard will be sufficient. Do you request any further explanation?

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): I do not think that the Mandatory Power should communicate this matter to the Postal Union. It should direct the communication to our Commission.

The CHAIRMAN: There is a slight misunderstanding the point of sending the communication to the International Postal Union because the Mandatory Power will cease to exist after 15 May and, it will no longer be responsible for its obligations with regard to the International Postal Union.

Mr. MORGAN (Panama): We can discuss the matter later.

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I suggest that if you agree in putting this suggestion - as to the form in which the communication to the Postal Union should take - to the Palestine Administration, I might ask them to let me have a copy of the way in which they do address the Postal Union, I could then let you have that and you would according accordingly, have a statement in your records as to exactly what has been done.

The CHAIRMAN: Yes, and may we assume that you will advise the Palestine Administration that its notification will be in the way that we have now agreed?

Mr. FLETCHER-COOKE (United Kingdom): I should not like to commit myself as to their legal obligations as a signatory to .the Convention but, I shall, certainly transmit your views to them.

The CHAIRMAN: And that will be without any illusion to the disruption of the services in the period when Palestine gill no longer be under the responsibility of the Mandatory Power?

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): I do not know if it is too early to pass to this question, bus since Sir Alexander Cadogan is here, I wonder if he could clarify this point.

In connection with the acceptance of one, two or perhaps more members of the Secretariat to go to Palestine before the term nation of the Mandate – if we come to the point where we shall have to re fort the security situation to the Security Council, with the view to the establishment of an international force, would that also apply to the sending of two or more military observers, whom the Security Council might send purely to observe the situation on the spot and to advise them as to the size, composition and type of military force that would be required?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I cannot answer that offhand, because I do not know what the answer is; but I can find out. If my government said that it did not mind members of the staff of the Commission going to Palestine beforehand, it has said nothing to exclude military members of the staff; it may not have occurred to my government that the Commission might want to send staff as such. But I shouldn’t think they would have any difficulty. If you will allow me, I can ask my Government.

It would rather depend on what kind of investigations or surveys such officer might want to make. Presumably if you sent officers for that purpose, you would want them to be given certain facilities in the way of being supplied with intelligence, and so on, on the military and security situation, by our authorities in Palestine. I shall ask what can be done in that respect, but I imagine that the officers would require, if they went for that purpose, certain facilities. I could enquire at the same time as to what extent that could be given to them.

The CHAIRMAN: Do I understand from paragraph 2 of the memorandum which we received today, that the suggestions contained therein are not exhaustive?

SIR ALEXANDER CADOGAN (Untied Kingdom): Point (d) says “to make whatever other preliminary arrangements may be possible”. That is a rather wide reference. That refers to preliminary arrangements, but I think the best I could do is to tell my government that this suggestion has been made and ask what it thinks of it and what it can to in the matter.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): It seems quite clear that the advance party would be able to make all necessary preparatory arrangements, excluding only the exercise of administrative functions which they have no business with, as long as the Commission is not there.

The CHAIRMAN: Yes, I understand it in the same way.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, that is all governed by (a): “to make arrangements for the reception of the Commission (i.e., accommodation, transport, etc.).”

But then, (b) goes further than that: “to consult with the Government of Palestine as to the departmental staff which the Commission will require for the purpose of taking over the Administration of Palestine...”

(d) goes even further: “to make whatever other preliminary arrangements may be possible.”

I think it is pretty wide. We shall put it to them, in any event.

The CHAIRMAN: May I inform you, Sir Alexander, that we have decided to charge individual members of the Commission with special sections of matters which should be negotiated with you and your delegation. Mr. Francisco has been charged with the question relating to the establishment of the preparatory steps with regard to the establishment of militia. Mr. Morgan has been charged with the question of the immigrants, now detained in Cyprus, and as you have heard, Mr. Federspiel has been charged with the question which was raised during this meeting. Perhaps the necessary arrangements for a meeting can be made by the Secretariat of the Commission.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): As far as my delegation and I are concerned, we shall fall in with that and be prepared at any time; if the members of the Commission who are in charge of these various aspects of the matter would let my delegation know when they are ready, I will see that a suitable officer is present for a discussion with them.

The CHAIRMAN: With regard to the answers which we have heard today, I think my colleagues will wish to consider the situation as it appears in the light of these answers, and perhaps we shall then arrange with you as to how to proceed further.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I shall, of course, let you know directly I have received the material in reply to the questions which I left unanswered today. I think there were five or six questions to which I was unable to reply, but I hope to be able to do that soon.

The CHAIRMAN: We are really pressed for time because of the dates set by the recommendations of the General Assembly.

How much of this afternoon’s conference could be released to the press?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): That is for the Chairman to say. I just wanted to say a word or two about the press. If you will remember, when I first appeared before you, I gave you some very confidential information. I am glad to say that the secrecy was very satisfactorily observed, and nothing got out. However, on a subsequent occasion, although we were supposed to be in a closed meeting, and although it was agreed to give out certain information verbatim, there were other points which we discussed which were not to be revealed. I made a statement with regard to security. In a certain organ of the press, two passages appeared which were practically verbatim of what was said here. Although it really did not matter very much in those two instances, it makes me a little nervous.

I hope that that there will not be increasing laxity in the matter of keeping our discussions confidential, because it is desirable that I should give you occasionally, material which is better kept secret. If leakages of that kind occur and increase, it will become increasingly difficult for me to do so.

The CHAIRMAN: May we know what these two passages were? We may be able to find an explanation.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): There was an article published in PM, dated 27 January. It says there: “Britain’s Sir Alexander Cadogan said that the Jewish statement that they are fighting a purely defensive war in Palestine is not tenable. ‘The, Jews,’ Cadogan said, are trying to consolidate their advantages by a succession of drastic operations designed to intimidate the Arabs and cure them of any desire for more conflict.’ ‘Both Jews arid Arabs,’ he said, ‘are attacking…’”

There is another passage relating to what Mr. Fletcher-Cooke said: “Mr. Cooke testified that Arabs make up 62 per cent of the Palestine Government employees and that none will cooperate with the United Nations Commission.’ ‘The Commission’s arrival in the Holy Land, he said, ‘would increase the fighting.’”

Possibly some of that information might have been obtained from other sources, but it is almost verbatim of what was said here in regard to two points.

The CHAIRMAN: I think I am able to explain the leakage. It was not a leakage from the meetings. That is a matter which will be incorporated in our first report to the Security Council on the situation.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): In any event, we appeal to you to exercise your authority in requesting the Commission, the Secretariat, and anyone who attends here, to be very careful about it.

The CHAIRMAN: We have already discussed this matter, because we were not satisfied to see in the newspapers something which was discussed in this Commission and which was intended for a report which will not be submitted to the Security Council until next week.

Mr. FEDERSPIEL (Denmark): This raises a question which I think we should take up with Sir Alexander. How much of the confidential information given to us, which we obviously have to act on, and which we have to keep confidential here, can subsequently, in the form of quotations or otherwise, be disclosed in the form of reports which eventually shall be made public? This case is an example, because the exact quotation here is incorporated in our draft report to the Security Council.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): There are two categories of information I might give you; one, in regard to the stages of withdrawal, I would regard, and I think you would regard - and I think most of the press would regard - as being of an operational character which must not be released; it would be dangerous to do so.

In regard to any other information or any of my replies to your questions, if you wish to put them into your report to the Security Council, I cannot complain of that. I am here to answer your questions. You are here to get the replies from me, and if they affect your estimate of the situation and the shape of the report which you propose to address to the Security Council, that is your decision. I cannot possibly say anything against that. But I only wanted to say that a certain amount does get out.

In the future, I might have to give you more or less operational information which you yourselves would not wish to have appear in an unrestricted document. I only wish to say that this is a tendency which frightens me, and I hope that we can tighten the restrictions on what is given to the press as much as possible. Perhaps the best method would be to give a certain amount of information to the press. If you say nothing, they generally pump something out of you.

The CHAIRMAN: I assure you that this was not given to the press; it was a leakage. It was not given out by any official channel of the Secretariat.

I think it would be best for us to agree as to what could be released from today’s meeting to the press.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I do not think there is anything very secretive in what I have given you today. I do not suppose that the Commission itself would wish to have any of this discuss in take place in public, and, therefore, it would not give the whole of those questions and answers to the press.

The CHAIRMAN: That is not intended at all.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): You could give a general indication of the attitude of my government on certain points, as I have indicated, and I do not think there would be any objection to that.

The CHAIRMAN: Is there any matter of which you expressly wish no mention to be made?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I do not think there is any such in what I have died today.

The CHAIRMAN: The indications, as you mentioned, will be given only in general terms. They will mention the matter, but not the exact position, because this is still a question under discussion.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Yes, if that is sufficient for the press. Of course, that at once exposes you to a cross-examination by the press.

The CHAIRMAN: The position with regard to immigration was a final one, and it was released immediately to the press, but these other questions are not.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): Exactly.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): How about the reply as to the possibility of the United Kingdom Government accepting the Commission earlier and thereby according the possibility of carrying out the decision with regard to the 1 April date? Is that final?

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): There has been no secret about my answer, such as it was.

Mr. MEDINA (Bolivia): It is going to be a very difficult task for our press officer when he is confronted by the press, to say that we are just discussing the matter and not be specific. The press is going to ask him very definite questions. It might be better to give him two or three of those facts without giving the specific answers.

The CHAIRMAN: I do not think there is any news with regard to this fortnight’s delay. It is rather a confirmation of what was stated before.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United: Kingdom): That is a decision, and there is no objection to your stating it.

The CHAIRMAN: I think you can rely on us to proceed as we have proceeded, keeping the necessary secrets. As for these other matters, some margin must be allowed to the press for matters which are not secret.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): That is agreed.

The CHAIRMAN: Since we are sitting in closed meetings, it can be imagined that there is great pressure on the part of the press. Our press representative is rather unhappy when he has to meet the press and not be able to tell them anything.

Sir Alexander CADOGAN (United Kingdom): I suppose you will indicate what was discussed, but I should hope you emphasize that we are still discussing it, and while it is still in discussion, it is rather embarrassing to have a view put as if it is a hard and fast last word on the subject; that does not help the negotiations or the discussions.

The CHAIRMAN: I should like to stress the difference between what was discussed with regard to immigration and this other matter. The position was final with regard to immigration, but the present matter is still under discussion.

Thank you very much.

At this point Sir Alexander Cadogan and his two assistants left the meeting.

Mr. MALANIA (Secretariat) read a telegram from Mr. Perez Guerrero concerning the invitation to serve with the Preparatory Economic Commission, which stated that he would not be available for two or three months.

Mr. Reedman, who had gone to Washington to investigate possibilities of other candidates, had put forward the name of Mr. Raul Prebisch, former Manager of the Central Bank of Argentina, who had been connected with the International Bank in the 1930’s, had ha`d wide experience in international affairs and was considered to be a brilliant economist.

The Commission deferred its decision on the matter.

RELATIONS WITH THE PRESS

With reference to Sir Alexander Cadogan’s remarks concerning leakages of information, the CHAIRMAN reminded the members that they had agreed to give no information and make no comments on the Commission’s work, and to leave relations with the Press to the Public Relations Officer.

It was observed that the policy so far followed, of informing the Press of the subjects discussed by the Commission, might have to be changed. The public was not necessarily entitled to know everything that happened.

It was decided that until the special report was issued no information whatever on the subject should be given to the Press.

The Commission decided to hold a Press conference on Monday, 2 February at 3.15 and a meeting immediately afterwards.

The Commission rose at 6.00 p.m.




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