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Reject Samuel’s Proposal for Establishment Arab Agency

October 12, 1923
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The Arab delegation today heard from the lips of Sir Herbert his plan which he hoped would put an end to their opposition. The Arab delegation, however, with little hesitation rejected it.

The plan of the High Commissioner as previously intimated provided for an Arab Agency analagous to the Jewish Agency.

Regarding the Balfour Declaration, the High Commissioner said that was an international obligation and there was no way to recede from it.

In view of the special psotion established for the Jews by means of the Jewish Agency, the Government, he said, offered to place the Arabs on the same footing by creating an Arab Agency.

Samuel urged that it should be accepted until a fully representative council is established.

The Arab Agency, he said, would control the immigration by reason of the fact that there would be five Arabs on the special committee dealing with immigration and only one Jew. By creating an Arab Agency, there would be insured absolute impartiality as between the government and the Arabs and the Jews.

The Agency, he said, would not be legislative but advisory, equivalent to the Zionist Organization.

When Samuel concluded, the Arab delegation announced that the proposals were not satisfactory. It reiterated its demand for a constitutional government.

“I am sorry”, Samuel rejoined. “I am requested to say by his Majesty’s government that they regard the establishment of an Arab Agency as a very great advance in the direction of meeting the wishes of the Arab population and consider that it should be accepted as a settlement of the points in controversy.

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