Jews Regain Full Control of Jordan Valley; Repulse Syrian Attacks; Raid Lebanon

The Jews are once again in full control of the Jordan Valley south of the Sea of Galilee, following the recapture yesterday of the settlements of Shaar Hagolah and Masada at the head of the valley, the Haganah revealed today.

Further to the north the Jews beat off new attempts by the Syrians to recapture Samakh and two Syrian planes were shot down during yesterday’s and last night’s operations. By this morning the entire southern shore of the Sea of Galilee (Lake Tiberias) was again in Jewish hands.

(A Lebanese communique reported today that an Israeli striking force had raided the village of Taibe, two-and-half miles inside Lebanon.Several villagers were attacked and some houses were destroyed before the raiders withdrew, the communique said.)

The settlement of Kinereth, on the eastern shore of the Sea, was bombed by the Syrians, while Arab concentrations at Lubia, Tel el Kasar and Flu were bombed by Israeli planes. The Haganah captured the Arab village of Hareb, Just across the border in Syria, and seized large stores of supplies and munitions. Six armored wehicles loaded with Syrian troops fleeing the town were blown up when they hit mines strewn around the village. All the Syrians were killed.

King Abdullah of Transjordan today announced that the Palestine Potash Company’s installations were in a “neutral zone,” The proclamation, however, followed by several days the evacuation1 of Beth Haarava, a Jewish village north of the Dead Sea in which the company’s workers lived. Before they withdrew, the Jews instituted a scorched earth policy and burned most of the company’s installations.

JEWS EVACUATE FIRST SETTLEMENT IN NEGEV; ALL SETTLERS LEAVE DURING NIGHT

The first Jewish settlement in the Negev to be evacuated since the beginning of hostilities last November was abandoned last night after a battle began between Jewish troops sent to relieve the settlement–Yad Mordechai–and Egyptian troops blockading it. One Jewish unit succeeded in fighting its way through the Egyptian lines and reaching the settlement where its members aided the wounded. After this breakthrough it was decided to withdraw from the colony. All settlers and Haganah troops, including the wounded, retreated during the night. At the same time Israeli planes bombed the Majdal area in southern Palestine.

A Haganah communique this morning reported that Egyptian planes yesterday damaged a mosque when they bombed Jaffa. The communique also mentioned several exchanges of fire at Kfar Saba and Meshek Haotzar, in central Palestine.

The Provisional Government was today considering the drafts of statutes setting up a Jewish Army and a Justice Ministry. The first prison was established at the Tel Mond police station and the Inspector-General of Police and Prisons and his deputy were named. The Inspector-General is Yehezekiel Sacharov, a former major in the Jewish Brigade, and his deputy is Yossef Nachmias, also a former major in the Brigade. Jewish authorities were reported studying applications from former Arab members of the Palestine police to join the Israeli police force.

Arab radio reports said that Arab League leaders now in Amman met today to discuss the Security Council’s call for a cease-fire in Palestine. They afterwards lunched with King Abdullah and the Regent of Iraq at the Royal Palace. The meeting lasted 90 minutes. No statement was issued to the press but it was indicated that a reply to the truce proposal is being sent to Faris el Khouri, Syrian delegate at Lake Success.

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