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Iraq Premier Assails Truman’s Statement on Palestine; Arab Leader Threatens “holy War”

In a statement described as “a reply to President Truman’s views on the Palestine issue,” Premier Hamdi Pachaji of Iraq today declared that “Palestine is an Arab country and will remain Arab despite all the efforts of the Zionists.”

“The Palestine question must be settled in the Near East, and neither the United States, nor any other country has the right to intervene in this question,” the Iraq Premier asserted, adding that the pan-Arab League will meet soon to discuss the Palestine problem.

Simultaneously, former Egyptian Premier Nahas Pasha released a statement declaring that “Palestine is an Arab nation and its problem concerns all Arabs. In view of the new attitude of the Zionists,” he continued, “the Arab League council must meet and take decisive measures guaranteeing the integrity of Arab rights in Palestine in conformity with the protecol adopted by the meeting of Arab nations in Alexandria in October, 1944. We hope the United Nations will understand the capital importance of the Palestine question for the Arabs and that they will seek a solution which will safeguard Arab rights,” Nahas Pasha concluded.

These two statements follow on the heels of a “warning” voiced here yesterday by Azzam Bey, secretary general of the Arab League, that a “holy war” between the Moslem and Christian worlds may break out if Palestine is re-opened to large-scale Jewish immigration. “The Arabs,” Azzam Bey said, “have the complete right to object to President Truman’s statement. They will never give up their opposition to Jewish immigration to Palestine.” He claimed that President Roosevelt allegedly promised King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabi that he “would not support the Jews in Palestine,” and took issue with President Truman’s disclosure that Stalin was not consulted in Potsdam on the Palestine question. “That Russia was not consulted is not understandable here,” he declared.

TRUMAN’S STATEMENT DELIVERED TO ARAB LEAGUE BY U.S. DIPLOMAT

Pointing out that “the Arabs constitute a majority in Palestine, the general secretary of the pan-Arab League called attention to the fact that the United States had promised that it would consult the member nations of the Arab League before attempting any settlement of the Palestine question. He revealed that the U.S. Minister in Cairo, Pinkney Tuck, had delivered to him the official text of the statement which President Truman made with regard to Palestine at his press conference in Washington last week.

A report from Damascus published in the Egyptian press today says that the entire Arab press in Syria carries belligerent articles in connection with President Truman’s statement. The newspaper Alefba is quoted as threatening unrest throughout the Near and Middle East, emphasizing that the relations between the Arab states and the countries supporting Zionism will become tense if the governments of the latter countries continue to support the demand for the establishment of a Jewish State in Palestine.

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