Lucerne (Aug. 28)
Dr. Chaim Weizmann has declined to accept the presidency of the World Zionist Organization, it became known today after the first attempts to compose the new Zionist Executive had been made. Dr. Weizmann, a former president of the organization, is presiding officer at the World Zionist Congress, now in the closing days of its nineteenth biennial session here.
David Ben-Gurion, Palestine labor leader, is also hesitant about entering the new Zionist Executive, it is understood, since he prefers to devote all his efforts to organizational activities of the Histadruth.
The composition of the Executive became an increasingly difficult problem for the nominating committee when the Mizrachi (orthodox Zionist group) also gave notice that it will not enter the new executive unless it is given a just proportion of the immigration certificates to Palestine.
Dr. Weizmann’s refusal to stand for the presidency is believed to be the result of influence brought to bear upon him by a group of his intimate friends who came to Lucerne specially for the purpose of inducing him not to accept the presidency because they would not wish to see him further involved in political activities for personal reasons and on account of his health.
Since the Congress will not conclude its sessions before Sunday, although it was originally announced that it would end them by Saturday at the latest, the hope is being entertained here that Dr. Weizmann may still be induced to accept the presidency. The next or twentieth World Zionist Congress will be held in Tel Aviv, all-Jewish city in Palestine and the only all-Jewish city in the world, if a proposal submitted today to the organization committee is accepted. The proposal provides for the erection of a special building in Tel Aviv for the Congress sessions. It is understood that the chances are excellent that the committee will accept.