British Govt. Hopes Arab League Leaders Meeting Will Accept U.N. Truce, Commons Told

The British Government hopes that the Arab leaders who will confer within the next few days in Amman will reverse their decision of last week and agree to an extension of the Palestine truce, Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs Christopher Mayhem told Commons today. He said the government “earnestly hoped” that in view of the Security Council’s support of the Palestine mediator’s position, the Amman parley will result in an acceptance of an unexpected new ceasefire order.

At the same time, Mayhew cautioned, Britain’s support for the renewal of the truce in Palestine does not imply any change in policy. “We have always been strong supporters of a truce and are in no way committed to the terms of any final settlement,” he declared.

(A dispatch received here from Transjordan said that the Syrian and Lebanese Prime Ministers conferred today with Transjordan leaders while the Arab League’s secretary-general, Abdul Rahman Pasha, reviewed the present military situation in Palestine with King Abdullah. One report said that hundreds of Arab demonstrators in Amman paraded through the city’s streets shouting: “Down with British Imperialism.” The demonstration, described as orderly, was one of several which occurred in the past few days.)

Meanwhile, Under-Secretary for Colonial Affairs Hector McNeil told the House that “Jewish authorities were not responsible” for the abduction of five Britons in Jerusalem last week on charges of “intelligence with the enemy.” The United Nations truce commission will report to the Security Council the “inability of the Jewish authorities to maintain law and order in Jerusalem” if the five Britons are not returned immediately.

BRITAIN ASKS MEDIATOR TO ENSURE FLOW OF OIL FROM HAIFA REFINERIES

A Foreign Office spokesman confirmed. today that the British Government has asked U.N. Palestine mediator Count Folkd Bernadotte to do his utmost to ensure the continued flow of oil from Haifa and the reopening of the refineries there.

The spokesman said that because Haifa is now in Jewish hands, a political problem might arise since the Iraqi Government, which controls the source of the oil supply, may not be willing to have its oil refined in a city under Israeli control.

NEXT STORY