GENEVA (Jun. 15)
Colonial Secretary Malcolm MacDonald, in a two-hour address to the League of Nations Mandates Commission, today defended Britain’s new Palestine policy as consistent with the mandate and necessary for the removal of a threat to peace in the Near East.
Urging the commission to give its approval to the policy, Mr. MacDonald asked that the members take into consideration the practical difficulties involved in administration of the mandate and warned that settlement of the Holy Land question was necessary to remove a cause of friction and unrest in the Near East.
Questioning of Mr. MacDonald by the commissioners is expected to take place tomorrow after they have studied the document, and a strenuous grilling was indicated. The Colonial Secretary informed the commission he would remain at its disposal until Saturday afternoon. The commission’s examination of the Mandatory Power’s report for 1938 was completed this morning.
Arab extremists headed by Jamal Husseini, relative of the exiled ex-Mufti of Jerusalem, asked the Commission to appoint a neutral commission to investigate the “official terrorism” against Arabs in the Holy Land. A memorandum to the Commission makes charges of atrocities by British troops and British and Jewish police. Another memorandum reiterates Arab objections to the new British policy on Palestine.