London (Jul. 30)
“The opening of Palestine to Jewish immigration is the most urgent demand which the World Zionist Conference will voice, but not the sole demand,” Moshe Shertok, head of the political department of the Jewish Agency, told a press-conference here today, outlining the primary purposes of the conference.
“At this historic juncture,” Shertok said, “there should be a major political decision with regard to Palestine primarily by the British Government, but supported also by the two great allies. This decision should provide for the setting aside of Palestine as a country where the Jewish people should be free to work out their own salvation and achieve statehood.”
Another purpose of the conference, Shertok said, is to stabilize the internal life of the Zionist movement. Pointing out that the conference coincides with a “momentrous event in the life of England and of the world as a whole,” Shertok emphasized that Zionism never linked its destinies with a single British political party and always maintained relations with the British people as a whole.
“However,” Shertok continued, “we deeply appreciate the favorable attitude taken by the Labor Party and its leaders with regard to Jewish aspirations in Palestine. We shall also not forget the fact that Winston Churchill, now the leader of the opposition in Parliament, condemned the White Paper in the House, while Herbert Morrion, present Lord President of the Council, announced at the same time, that the White paper should not be considered a binding policy on subsequent British governments if conditions change. Never have conditions called more urgently for the abrogation of the White Paper than now.”
There is no ground to fear that Russia would oppose a favorable British decision on Palestine, endorsed by the United States, Shertok stated. He said that the strongest delegations at the conference are those from Palestine and from the United States. There are also delegates from all the British dominions, France, Holland, Switzerland, Sweden, Italy, Czechoslovakia, Greece, North Africa and Egypt.
The absence of delegates from East European countries is due to exit difficulties, Shertok revealed, emphasizing that entry visas to Britain were granted to delegates from all parts of Europe. The conference was also addressed by Louis Lipsky who (##) that Rossevelt, and recently President Truman, had assured Zionist leaders in the United States that America will urge Britain to take a favorable decision with regard the Jewish claims on Palestine.