Question of Palestine home
United Nations Palestine Commission (UNPC)
18 April 1948
Department of Public Information
Press and Publications Bureau
Lake Success, New York
Press Release PAL/160
18 April 1948
PALESTINE COMMISSION DECIDES TO FORM NUCLEUS
EMERGENCY POLICE FORCE FOR JERUSALEM
The Palestine Commission this afternoon decided unanimously to proceed immediately with steps directed toward the formation of an emergency police force for the City of Jerusalem to exercise special security functions after the termination of the mandate on 15 May.
The Commission has been advised that between 200-250 British members of the Palestine Police would be willing to volunteer for police duty in Jerusalem after 15 May. Those police officers will be offered contracts by the Commission for the period 16 May to July 1, 1948. They will form the nucleus of an emergency police force for the city and are not to be confused with the police force which the Governor-General of Jerusalem, appointed by the Trusteeship Council, is to form according to the General Assembly's partition plan. The Commission is ready to recommend British police officers volunteering for duty with this emergency police force for duty with the police force of whatever authority will be established in Jerusalem by the Special Session of the General Assembly.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Trygve Lie, has agreed to authorize the withdrawal of a sum up to $200,000 from the United Nations Working Capital Fund to cover the expenditures connected with the formation of this emergency police force. The Palestine Commission will undertake steps to obtain from the General Assembly further credit to cover the period beyond the initial period provided for by the sum authorized by the Secretary-General.
An experienced police officer will be engaged by the Secretariat of the Palestine Commission to proceed as soon as possible to Jerusalem to recruit the members of the emergency police force. The Mandatory Power has consented to permit members of the Palestine Police to volunteer for this police force.
The Commission has instructed Pablo de Azcarate, the head of its Advance Party in Jerusalem, to take the necessary steps to inform all volunteers of the Commission's decision and to request the Mandatory Administration to make the necessary inquiries among the British members of the Palestine Police.
At the opening of today's meeting the commission heard reports from Dr. Constantine Stavropoulos, its legal advisor, and Dwarkanath Ghosh of its economic staff, who had been members of the Commission's Advance Party in Jerusalem and had returned yesterday to Lake Success.
Tomorrow the Commission will meet after the meeting of the Security Council, scheduled for 2:30 p.m., to begin consideration of further steps in the selection of a Provisional Council of Government for the Jewish State.
# # # # #