Rome (Oct. 31)
Dr. Umberto Nachon, representative of the Jewish Agency in Italy, today vigorously denied rumors published this morning in some Italian newspapers attributing the bombing of the British embassy building in Rome last night to “Zionist terrorists.” The building was wrecked beyond repair by time bombs planted on the doorsteps.
“I do not believe for a moment that Jews would commit such an act,” he said in a statement to the press. He added that there was no reason to accept the rumors that Zionist extremists were responsible for the blast, especially since the British and Italian authorities here confess complete bewilderment as to the persons or groups involved.
“The British have many enemies all over the world, and it is sheer stupidity to depict all acts of terrorism and irresponsibility in all parts of the world to the account of the Zionist movement,” the Jewish Agency representative continued,” There are a half a million people in Rome. Anyone of them might have done it, and the Jews are a small minority indeed.”
Other Jewish sources here expressed similar doubts, explaining that the bombing runs counter to the policy of the Jewish resistance movement in Palestine. The Haganah, the pointed out, committed such acts only rarely and solely against targets of strategic importance, while the Irgun had always given advance warning of bombings and had always taken credit for such activities when responsible.
Three persons were injured as result of the bombing, one of them critically. The police announced the arrest of two persons, but did not reveal their identity. The Italian Cabinet held an urgent session and sent a message of regret to the British Government.