London (Nov. 19)
Colonial Secretary Arthur Creech-Jones told Commons today that British troops could not be completely evacuated from Palestine before August 1, as previously announced. The statement was made in reply to a demand by Daniel Lipson, Independent, that the withdrawal be completed by May 1 to save British lives.
Creech-Jones evaded a direct reply to a question as to whether the evacuation had already begun. He told another questioner that as much of the equipment as can be withdrawn would be out by the August 1 deadline.
Richard Stokes, Labor, asked the Colonial Secretary to “make it quite clear to our American friends that unless they stop subsidizing the Zionist movement, western mothers will have to send their sons over to impose an unwelcome policy.” Creech-Jones said that the government had a great deal of information concerning the financing and organization of illegal immigration to Palestine, but thought it would be inopportune to make a full statement while the U.N. was considering the entire Palestine issue.
It was learned authoritatively today that the newest British reply to the implementation scheme approved at Lake Success earlier this week has been conveyed to Sir Alexander Cadogan, chief of the British delegation at the U.N., leaving to his discretion the timing of the reply. It is understood the Foreign Office feels that there should be further clarification as to the means of transferring authority from the Mandatory to the U.N. Implementation Commission.
The Cadogan statement is expected to be based on a reaffirmation of Britain’s unwillingness to accept a solution not based on Arab-Jewish agreement and its determination that British forces not be drawn into any conflict as a result of enforcement of the U.N. plan.
Informed London quarters feel that while Britain will not obstruct any U.N. decision, a distinction must be drawn between obstructionism and cooperation with the U.N. Commission. Britain, they add, is not inclined to share its Mandatory obligations with another authority and is anxious that there be no duplication of authority. These same sources assert that difficulties may arise over the question of whether the Assembly has the legal power to appoint a commission with administrative authority.