President Weizmann Moves His Office to Jerusalem; Ben Gurion Greeted in Jerusalem
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President Weizmann Moves His Office to Jerusalem; Ben Gurion Greeted in Jerusalem

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Israel Premier Ben Gurion arrived here today from Tel Aviv to supervise arrangements for the transfer of his office to the Jewish section of the city. The transfer of the office equipment and records of the office of President Chaim Weizmann to Jerusalem also began today.

Six full ministries have already been transferred to Jerusalem. They are: the Ministry of Supply and Rationing, the Ministry for Education and Culture, the Ministry of Welfare, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry for Religious Affairs and the Ministry for War Victims. In addition, there are functioning in Jerusalem today several divisions of the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Agriculture end Ministry of Communications.

"We are here to stay," Premier Ben Gurion declared today to members of the Jewish Agency, who greeted him upon his arrival here from Tel Aviv. The Premier made the statement as he inspected the Jewish Agency premises where the Knesset will reassemble on Dec. 26.

Preparations for the transfer of the Knesset and of several government offices from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem actually began months ago so that the announcement yesterday by Mr. Ben Gurion of the move to Jerusalem was perhaps less of a surprise here than elsewhere.


Plans had also been elaborated to house the Parliament and various Israel Ministries, as well as the residence of the Premier, on the slopes of the hill where the headquarters of the World Zionist Organization is to be constructed. The site overlooks the entire city and adjoins Herzl Hill, site of the transferred grave of Dr. Theodor Herzl, founder of modern Zionism.

Immediately after the United Nations vote last week for internationalization of Jerusalem, the Israel Cabinet dispatched David Remez, Minister of Communications, and Dr. Dov Joseph, the Minister of Supply and Rationing, to Jerusalem to look for adequate accommodations for the Knesset and the Premier’s office.

Both Ministers, it is learned, conferred here with the Jewish Agency, which preferred the hall where the first Knesset met, but that was found too small, and they negotiated for a lease on the Orion Cinema, which will be rebuilt for the Knesset until the permanent parliament building is erected.

The new site of government here will occupy an area of several hundred acres, which have already have already been allotted and are now undergoing conditioning for the building which will take at least two years to build and will cost approximately two million pounds.

In view of the current Israel-Transjordan negotiations, no real danger exists for any government institution or office here. The moving of the Israel capital here will not only revive the city, politically and economically, but return to it "David’s Crown" and tremendously increase the prestige of the government throughout the state and in the ranks of world Jewry, it was felt here today.

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