London (Nov. 23)
The intention of the British government to establish a legislative council in Palestine without further consultation with the British parliament on the subject was announced tonight in the House of Commons by Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister, Colonial Secretary. Cunliffe-Lister’s statement came in reply to interpellations by Josiah Wedgewood, Laborite M.P.
The question of a legislative council for Palestine, over which Great Britain holds a mandate, has been repeatedly and lengthily discussed in the House, Cunliffe-Lister declared, and there is no need for further consideration of the question by the House.
A complete misapprehension prevails regarding British intentions and obligations in Palestine, Sir Philip pointed out. “Our obligations remain the same whether the legislative council is established or not,” he declared.
He detailed the differences between a Palestine legislature and the proposed legislative council and stressed the fact that it is not intended to set up an independent Palestine government. He gave “complete assurance that the powers of the British government, the British parliament and the High Commissioner to carry out the mandate policy remain strictly and completely unimpaired when the legislative council is established.”
The purpose of the council, Cunliffe-Lister explained, is to give the various sections of opinion in Palestine the opportunity to express their opinions in a representative assembly.
The immigration of Transjordanian Arabs into Palestine is not restricted and any restrictions would constitute a complete breach of the mandate, Cunliffe-Lister declared when questioned on the subject by Barnett Janner, Liberal party member. Sir Philip, however, failed to explain