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Mandates Commission Broadens Partition Inquiry to Include Other Plans

THE ENTIRE PALESTINE QUESTION WAS LAID WIDE OPEN TODAY BY THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS MANDATES COMMISSION, WHICH REDUCED GREAT BRITAIN’S PLAN FOR PARTITIONING THE HOLY LAND TO THE STATUS OF ONE POSSIBLE SOLUTION OF THE TROUBLES THERE.

DESPITE THE CONTENTION OF BRITAIN’S COLONIAL SECRETARY, WILLIAM G.A. ORMSBY-GORE, AND THE ROYAL COMMISSION THAT THE PRESENT PALESTINE MANDATE IS UNWORKABLE, THE MANDATES COMMISSION ANNOUNCED THAT IT WOULD DECIDE THE QUESTION FOR ITSELF AFTER MAKING ITS OWN STUDY, AND THAT IT WOULD NOT LIMIT ITS RECOMMENDATIONS TO THE COUNCIL TO THE BRITISH ROYAL COMMISSION REPORT PROPOSING PARTITION.

AT TODAY’S SESSION MR. ORMSBY-GORE WAS QUESTIONED AT LENGTH ABOUT DETAILS OF THE PARTITION PLAN, AND WAS REQUESTED TO REMAIN IN GENEVA FOR FURTHER QUESTIONING. HE PROMISED TO STAY UNTIL THURSDAY.

THE COMMISSION DECIDED THAT IT WAS COMPETENT TO EXAMINE THE PALESTINE QUESTION ANEW IN ALL ITS RAMIFICATIONS. IN ITS OFFICIAL STATEMENT THE COMMISSION ANNOUNCED THAT IT WILL FIRST EXAMINE THE RECORD OF THE BRITISH ADMINISTRATION IN THE HOLY LAND. THIS WILL INVOLVE STUDYING THE 1935 AND 1936 REPORTS OF THE PALESTINE GOVERNMENT, COVERING THE PERIOD OF THE ARAB REBELLION.

NEXT, THE COMMISSION ANNOUNCED, IT WILL ASCERTAIN WHETHER THE MATERIAL NOW AVAILABLE IS SUFFICIENT TO ENABLE THE LEAGUE COUNCIL TO FORM AN OPINION ON THE PROBLEM AS A WHOLE AS WELL AS ON THE VARIOUS SUGGESTED SOLUTIONS.

IN OTHER WORDS, THE COMMISSION PLACES BRITAIN’S PARTITION PROPOSAL FORMALLY ON A PAR WITH VARIOUS OTHER SCHEMES FOR SETTLING THE PALESTINE PROBLEM. FURTHER, THE COMMISSION INDICATES THAT IT DOES NOT TAKE THE ELABORATE ROYAL COMMISSION REPORT AS THE LAST WORD ON THE SUBJECT.

FINALLY, THE COMMISSION ANNOUNCED, IT WILL ASCERTAIN WHETHER THE MANDATE IS IN FACT UNWORKABLE, AS BRITAIN CONTENDS. SINCE THIS IS THE BASIC BRITISH ARGUMENT, THE MANDATES BODY THUS GAVE EVIDENCE THAT THE ENTIRE QUESTION IS AS MUCH OPEN TO DISCUSSION AS IT WAS BEFORE MR. ORMSBY-GORE MADE HIS ARGUMENT.

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