Palestine May Invoke Martial Law Because of Courts’ ‘non-cooperation’

The possibility that the Government might proclaim martial law loomed today after Chief Justice Sir Michael F. J. McDonnell, in a sweeping decision, upset the emergency system of collectively punishing Arab towns for acts of terrorism.

Refusal of the courts to uphold administrative measures issued to check fifteen-week-old disorders was regarded as making the position of the authorities difficult in dealing with guerilla warfare.

Justice McDonnell’s verdict, which provided for remission of a $5,000 collective fine levied on the town of Gaza for damaging of railway telephones, invalidates eighteen other collective fines.

Arabs instituted habeas corpus proceedings for release of strike leaders held in a concentration camp at Sarafand. An action for their release had been dismissed by the High Court on technical grounds. The Arabs were encouraged in their new action by the decision of Justice McDonnell.

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