Labor Peers Hit British Govt. on Role in Arab-israel Issue

Labor peers put the government on the defensive yesterday over its handling of the Arab-Israel conflict, while Lord Reading, the government spokesman in the House of Lords, repeated statements made earlier in Commons by Foreign Secretary Sir Anthony Eden and Minister of State Anthony Netting to the effect that conclusion of the Anglo-Egyptian pact on the Suez has made for an improved climate in the Middle East in which there is greater hope for making progress on an Israel-Arab settlement.

Lord Alexander asked for strong guarantees from the signatory powers of the Tripartite Declaration of 1950–Britain, France and the United States–to Israel in view of Arab threats against the Jewish State, specifically one made recently by the Egyptian Minister for National Guidance (propaganda). Lord Pakenham said he could not understand why an alliance of friendship had not been concluded by Britain with Israel.

The Archbishop of York called for placing the Holy Places in Palestine under international control, admitting the serious difficulties in the path of internationalizing Jerusalem, a move which he supported. He criticized the submission of credentials in Jerusalem by the British and American ambassadors as a move which created “anxiety.”

The Times of London, in a dispatch from Jerusalem, commented today that for all practical purposes the problem of Jerusalem’s status would seem to be ended. The comment followed a report that the new British Ambassador to Israel, John W. Nicholls, had presented his credentials to President Ben Zvi in Jerusalem.

The possibility of an Anglo-Israel military “arrangement” must be ruled out as long as Israel’s “quarrel with the Arab states remains unhealed, ” the Daily Telegraph, a leading Conservative newspaper, declared today. In an editorial, the Telegraph discussed possible British bases in the Middle East to replace the Suez Canal military complex.

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