JERUSALEM (May. 18)
Spurning an allocation of but 220 certificates to cover Jewish labor immigration for four months ending July 31, the Jewish Agency for Palestine today challenged the Palestine Government to a showdown on the issue.
In a dramatic public statement, the Agency announced its decision not to accept the allotment since it “chained” the Jewish immigration movement, virtually “limiting it to zero.”
In rejecting the certificates proffered by the Government, part of a schedule totalling 770 certificates, the Agency resigned from its customary function of distributing them among all Palestine Jewish labor divisions on behalf of Jewry in forty countries of the world.
The action of the Agency, which is recognized by the League of Nations as world Jewry’s representative in Palestine matters, is unprecedented in the eight years of its existence.
The Agency voiced confidence that the Jewish masses throughout the world would support its stand and demonstrate its determination not to compromise with the Government action at this “fateful hour to the future of their work of resurrection.”
The Agency’s statement also protested inclusion in the 770 schedule of a total of 400 certificates earmarked for immigration of German-Jewish colonists instead of the 700 requested for this purpose. The protest was based on the contention that absorption of these colonists was insured by a special fund created by the Council for German Jewry, of which Viscount Samuel and Felix M. Warburg are the joint chairmen. Another 150 certificates, making up the total of 770, were reserved for the Government Immigration Department to be applied to illegal immigrants.
For the first time, the Agency officially revealed that it had asked a schedule of Â£1,250 certificates to cover Jewish labor immigration for the six-month period from April to October. This request, it search in which Government representatives participated.
The quota of 220 labor certificates, the Agency charged, was a perversion of the labor immigration schedule. That number would have to cover all Jewish labor needs in Palestine during the ensuing four months, including agriculture, industry, building, transport, public works and other services.