Jerusalem (Sep. 8)
The negotiations between Arab and Jewish leaders concerning a possible compromise arrangement to settle the Wailing Wall issue have been discontinued owing to the intransigence of the Grand Mufti and his associates and there appears to be no prospect that the pourparlers will be renewed. As a result of the Wailing Wall Commission’s grant of additional time during which it would consider compromise proposals regarding the Wailing Wall, negotiations have been going on for some time with the assistance of the Palestine government.
Last week Col. Frederick Kisch, chairman of the Palestine Executive of the Jewish Agency, announced that there was some little hope of the negotiations succeeding but that he would not disclose the details.
While the negotiations between the Arabs and the Jews for a settlement of the Wailing Wall dispute have broken down, the Hebrew paper, Doar Hayom, commenting on the government’s proposals during the pourparlers, says that the offers of the government if accepted by the Jews mean full surrender and the strengthening of the position of the Grand Mufti. Such proposals are useless, the Doar Hayom says, because “it is impossible to imagine that no Jewish resident or tourist will bring appurtenances or prayer-books to the Wall or raise his voice during prayer. And when any one does so this will be regarded as a contravention of the agreement.” The paper insists that the matter be decided by the Wailing Wall Commission.
The government’s proposals to which the Doar Hayom takes exception would acknowledge the right of the Jews to be at the Wall but would not permit them to hold services there or to bring any appurtenances. They would also be forbidden to post written prayers and notices on the Wall. The Arabs, on the other hand, would be permitted to construct certain buildings in the vicinity of the Wall and to make certain changes with the approval of the government.