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General Assembly

5 April 1948


Communication Received from Hebrew
Committee of National Liberation

The following communication, requesting an opportunity to submit proposals at an oral hearing, has been received from Mr. Peter Bergson of the Hebrew Committee of National Liberation.

2315 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W.
Washington 8, D. C.
March 31, 1948

Dear Dr. Lisicky:

In the light of the recant developments in the Security Council and the possibility of a Special session of the General Assembly to discuss the question of Palestine, I beg to submit to you the views of the Hebrew Committee of National liberation.

Now that the United States Delegate has withdrawn his request that the Security Council instruct the United Nations Palestine Commission to suspend its operations, there is general consent that only the General Assembly will have the authority to change the terms of reference under which the Palestine Commission now operates. It is clear, therefore, that the Commission continues to be the United Nations authority responsible for the Palestine problem.

We submit that conditions of chaos are developing in Palestine that are already claiming a heavy toll of lives and causing extreme suffering and hardship to hundreds of thousands of people. We believe that it is the plain duty of the Commission to undertake all possible steps to ameliorate conditions in Palestine, and to reduce the bloodshed and suffering to a minimum. Such steps must be undertaken immediately, even if a call for a special session of the General Assembly is eventually issued, and must continue until new instructions are given the Commission by the General Assembly, if the Assembly elects to alter its decision.

We must urgently request, therefore, an opportunity to meet with the United Nations Palestine Commission, when we wish to submit proposals for steps to be undertaken with regard to the security in Palestine, the supply of essential foodstuffs, and the question of the creation of a Provisional Council of Government, as well an the repatriation to Meeting and the release of citizens now detained in British concentration camps.

The Hebrew Committee of National Liberation, as a Palestinian body in exile, speaks in the interests of the people of Palestine and represents large segments of the population who have forgot and opposed the British regime of acceptance in Palestine. We regretfully submit that, with the exception of our appearance before the Commission on March 1st, the Commission has dealt only with those elements in Palestine who are acceptable to the British regime of occupation. In the light of the record of that regime, in the light of the obstacles which the British Government has put in the path of the Commission’s fulfillment of its tasks, and in view of the fact that the Commission itself has unsuccessfully intervened on behalf of the hundreds of Palestinians kept in prisons and concentration camps because of their political views, the Hebrew Committee of National Liberation feels justified in asking that an adequate opportunity be given it to negotiate with the United Nations Palestine Commission for the amelioration of the present conditions in Palestine.

With the assurances of my highest esteem and consideration, I am

Faithfully yours,
Peter H. Bergson

Honorable Karel Lisicky, Chairman
United Nations Palestine Commission
Lake Success, New York

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