Palestine Official Dies; Murder Suspect Slain Trying to Escape
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Palestine Official Dies; Murder Suspect Slain Trying to Escape

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Walter S.S. Moffatt, Acting District Commissioner in Jenin, today succumbed to gunshot wounds received yesterday, while an Arab identified as his assailant was killed in attempting to escape from a military camp.

The 45-year-old Government official, who had served in Palestine continuously since 1925, died in the Government hospital in Haifa after a blood transfusion and emergency operation. He was the most important British official to die at the hands of Arab terrorists since the murder of Lewis Y. Andrews, District Commissioner for the Galilee, in Nazareth last September.

Troops and police, throwing a cordon around Jenin, captured an Arab who answered the description of the assailant given by Mr. Moffatt on his deathbed. Identified by eye witnesses to the attack, the Arab was imprisoned in a military camp. He was shot while attempting to escape and later died.

As Mr. Moffatt was buried this afternoon in Haifa, female inhabitants of Jenin were taken to the mosque and males to the police courtyard to be searched. Houses and shops were searched and a quantity of arms and ammunition was discovered. This morning inhabitants were evacuated to one kilometer of the town and a number of houses were marked to be dynamited. Major-General Robert H. Haining, General Officer commanding British forces in Palestine, proceeded to Jenin to direct operations.

The Government censor today prohibited the local press from publishing any references to or comments on activities of police, military forces and rebels, except as contained in official communiques.

Meanwhile, 35 men and women of the communal settlement of Ein Hamifratz, composed of members of the Shomer Hatzair, Zionist youth organization, from Polish Galicia, were secretly moved at dawn from Kiriat Haim to the southern shore of the Naaman River, two miles from Acre, in a completely Arab region infested by bandits. The settlers will drain 8,000 dunams (about 1,600 acres) of salt-marsh land owned by the Jewish National Fund preparatory to colonization by the settlers remaining at Ein Hamifratz and at two other colonies.

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