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Lovett Says White House Consulted Him Before Truman Issued Statement on Palestine

Under-Secretary of State Robert A. Lovett told a press conference today that he had been called to the White House Sunday afternoon to consult on the Presidential statement issued later that day with regard to American policy toward Israel.

Asked if he had cleared the matter with Secretary of State Marshall in Paris, Mr. Lovett replied that he had notified the Secretary of the White House decision. Pressed further to make it clear whether he had time to really “clear” the matter with the Secretary and if there were time for Marshall’s reply to reach Washington before the statement was issued, Mr. Lovett refused to comment.

“Do you believe there is a conflict between the White House statement and the position taken by Secretary Marshall in endorsing the Bernadotte plan at the Paris assembly?” a correspondent asked. Mr. Lovett replied that the statement issued by the White House was a Presidential statement and stands by itself. He was then asked if the original statement made by Secretary Marshall in support of the plan had been cleared with all members of the U.S. delegation at Paris. (At the time, Republican spokesman John Foster Dulles let it be known that he had not been consulted on the matter.) Mr. Lovett replied that he did not know and that he thought the answer to that could only be found in Paris.

The Under-Secretary also declined to comment on whether he believed the Marshall statement represents conclusive U.S. support of the Bernadotte plan. As he had said many times before, Mr. Lovett stated, he would not comment on Palestine or on the interpretations made by the Secretary. Asked if a joint British-American resolution supporting the Bernadotte plan is being worked on, Mr. Lovett said he did not know, again referring his questioner to Paris.

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