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U.S. Warns Israel and Arabs to Settle Palestine Refugee Issue

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The United States warned Israel and the Arab states in the Ad Hoc Political Committee today that if they continued to show so little desire to settle the question of the Palestine refugees it would not shoulder the burden of supplying relief for the refugees.

James P. Richards, U.S. representative, said that Israel should take “further steps with a minimum of delay in discharge of the responsibilities she has accepted for compensating the Palestine refugees and that Israel would be well advised to renew consideration of the responsibility for and the possibilities of repatriation.”

“Is it not possible,” he asked, “to solve the problem of the Jordan waters on the basis of equity and economy, dedicating a fair share of the benefits which could be thus obtained to those refugees who chose to settle in the Jordan water shed?”

Mr. Richards drew attention to the fact that the UN Relief and Works Agency had sought and secured the best engineering advice on the development of the Jordan. The American delegate spoke of the TVA project for the Jordan waters as “one which must command the most thoughtful and careful consideration.”

Mr. Richards was gratified that Egypt, Jordan and Syria–states directly concerned with the refugee problem–had joined the advisory committee of UNRWA in the past year. The U.S. is one of the co-sponsors of a resolution designed to continue the work of UNRWA and assistance to the refugees, which was initiated by the General Assembly several years ago.

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