JERUSALEM (Mar. 16)
The Jewish Agency would welcome a truce in Palestine as requested by the United States, France and China yesterday if there is “a grantee that it will not encroach in any way on the Jewish State and will not be ?ely a device to give the Arabs time to make further preparations for war,” an Agency spokesman told a press conference here today, “We did not start this fight,” he added.
As soon as members of the Agency executive abroad have approved the recent Haganah-Irgun agreement Jewish leaders here will initiate action toward a pact with Stern Group, it was reliably learned today. Several of the Agency members here urging that preparations for the negotiations be speeded up because they believe at the talks will be drawn out and they hope to see an accord reached by the time a wish State is formally proclaimed.
Mayor Israel Rokach last night revealed that work will soon begin on engorging the port of Tel Aviv to handle deep draft vessels. The project, which is prospected to have a tremendous effect on the economic life of the Jewish State, is prospected to be completed by August 1. Present plans call for dredging operations to ?gin in the estuary of the Yarkon River.
Following a meeting of all members of the consular corps in Jerusalem the body ?sued a statement expressing “shock” that the national colors of a foreign nation the United States) were used to cover the planting of explosives in the Jewish Agency headquarters which led to the death of 13 persons, the wounding of 90 others and the ?ss of considerable property. The statement also protests repeated Arab breaches of consular immunity and announces that the consuls will draw the attention of their respective governments to the situation which is preventing them from discharging their normal duties.
DAY PASSES QUIETLY IN PALESTINE; HEAVY SNOW FALLS IN JERUSALEM AREA
Today passed comparatively quietly with only a minor attack on Mekor Haim, outside Jerusalem, and a train robbery near Tulkarm reported. The lull in fighting was attributed in large measure to the heavy blanket of snow that covered Jerusalem and much of the surrounding country yesterday in one of the rare snow storms to occur in Palestine. The anew reached a depth of several inches in the Hebron hills, while heavy rains were reported in other parts of the country. The last snow fell here in February, 1946.
Arabs in Jerusalem today stole a press car from the Palestine Information office, while a group of Irgunists held up the assistant district commissioner or Lydda near Tel Aviv and stole his car, but gave him a safe conduct to the Arab lines. An official announcement revealed that the TWA plane, which was fired on Saturday night, was attacked with tracer bullets over the Arab village of Yehudia, near Jaffa. The attack caused the American airline to cancel all service in and to Palestine.
A prominent Arab political leader, who recently arrived in Jerusalem, has revealed that King Abdullah of Transjordan is making large-scale preparations for an invasion of Palestine and the occupation of the Hebron and Beersheba areas immediately after the termination of the Mandate on May 15, The British-officered Arab Legion will be in the vanguard of the invading force, according to the Arab leader.
Arabs who sell food to Jews will be subject to the death penalty, according to a “decree” issued today by Arab guerrilla headquarters somewhere in northern Palestine. The “decree” states that Arabs caught dealing with Jews will be tried in special military courts and if found guilty will be summarily executed.