Pope Seeking U.S. Intervention with Israel on Internationalization of Holy Places

Serious diplomatic discussions on Palestine are now taking place between the Vatican and the United States; it was reported here today from Rome.

The report, published in the Daily Telegraph, says that it is believed that the Pope is asking the U.S. Government to use its good offices with the Israeli Government to secure the internationalization of the Holy Places in Palestine and the granting of a special status there for Christian religious bodies.

(Myron C, Taylor, special representative of President Truman to the Vatican, is now in Rome and has had two interviews with the Pope this week. In Washington, State Department officials dealing with Vatican and Israeli affairs claimed they knew nothing about the U.S. being asked to intercede in the problem of the Holy Places.)

In an article in the Manchester Guardian today, Norman Bentwich, first Attorney General of Palestine under the British Mandate, said that the United Nations plan for internationalization of Jerusalem was “likely to be stillborn” and that an international authority to assure religious rights and access to the Holy Places might be the only thing to be saved from the wreckage of the United Nations plan which Israel originally had been prepared to accept.

Such an international authority, he said, might be acceptable to both Jews and Arabs, pointing out that “after a year-and-a-half of bitter conflict, there is now a reeling of peace in the air and the unnatural segregation of the two parts of the city and the two peoples should come to an end.”

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