U N I T E D N A T I O N S
20 May 1948
CABLEGRAM DATED 19 MAY 1948 FROM THE PALESTINE TRUCE COMMISSION
ADDRESSED TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE SECURITY COUNCIL
Following is text of telegram from Shertok to Kohn handed to Chairman Truce Commission May 19:
"To Leo Kohn from M. Shertok for Chairman Security Council Truce Commission Jerusalem.
"Greatly regret interruption civilian traffic to Jerusalem make personal contact with you and Commission temporarily impossible. Meanwhile address myself to you in writing on matter which brooks no delay. Am transmitting regularly authentic information on course Arab invasion to Security Council through our representatives in New York but am informed that unless this information confirmed by you, Security Council may not be in position take official cognizance of our reports. Therefore, would be grateful if you arrange for immediate cable report to be sent Security Council on present position to be followed by further progress reports. In interests authenticity and speed, take liberty suggesting that Colonel Lund be authorized to come to Tel Aviv keep close liaison with us and report Security Council direct on your behalf. Factual position is as follows:
"Since Saturday morning planes of Egyptian Air Force have been raiding Tel Aviv several times daily, bombing and machine-gunning causing destruction and loss life. At least three planes brought down by our ground defenses, two pilots captured alive, held prisoners. Planes bear Egyptian Air Force markings, pilot pay books in possession.
"2. Egyptian planes also bombed Niram Settlement in South Palestine.
"3. Several mechanized columns of Egyptian Regular Forces operating in South Palestine. One of them repeatedly attacked Niram Settlement with Tanks and Artillery. Attacks so far repulsed with heavy losses to invaders.
"4. Unidentified, probably Iraqi, planes been bombing settlements East and South Lake Tiberias: Ein Gev, Ash Dot Yaakov, Afikim, Massada, Shaar Hagolan, as well as Tiberias City.
"5. Mechanized Iraqi column invaded territory State Israel East of Jordan and Lake Tiberias, launched shell fire attacks against Jewish positions Samakh and settlements Shaar Hagolan, Ash Dot and Afiham.
"6. Forces Arab Legion of Transjordan occupied Palestine Electric Corporation power house on confluence Jordan and Yarmuk Rivers after shelling buildings and damaging works. This column now reported moving towards Jewish Settlement Beth Yosef in Northern part Beisan Alley within territory State Israel.
"7. Another column Arab Legion crossed Allenby Bridge turned North along Jordan Valley and reached Nablus whence one part proceeded West toward Coastal Plain and another South towards Lamallah. Latter force attacked and occupied Jewish Settlement Nveh Yaakov presumably in preparation for attack on Jewish Jerusalem.
"8. Arab Legion column after heavily attacking Jewish Settlement of Kfar Etzion group between Jerusalem and Hebron which resulted in their destruction and large scale loss of life turned South towards Beersheba and occupied Iraq Suweidan Police Station within State Israel territory.
"Would appreciate intimation whether suggestion regarding Lund accepted and what action you found possible take."
Should Security Council wish Truce Commission to undertake confirmation of such reports, it will be necessary for SC to provide Truce Commission with a staff of competent military observers at once.
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