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Ben Gurion to Resume Discussions in London with Govt; Doubts Jews Will Attend Parley

January 13, 1947
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

David Ben Gurion, chairman of the Jewish Agency executive, is returning to London tomorrow or Tuesday to resume discussions with British Colonial Minister Arthur Creech-Jones, it was learned today. Ben Gurion returned to Palestine from Britain last week to consult with Jewish leaders here.

In a statement to the Palestine Broadcasting System, the Agency chairman said that there was only a very slight chance that the Zionists would participate in the London conference, which is due to resume next week, but if they did, Dr. Chaim Weizmann would be included in the Jewish delegation, although he is no longer a member of the Zionist executive.

In a broadcast last night over the PBS, Ben Gurion said that although it was likely that the London conference would be solely an Anglo-Arab meeting, this did not indicate a severance of relations between the Zionists and Britain. Discussions with Britain, as well as with every member nation of the United Nations, would be pressed in an effort to secure a final decision on the Palestine issue as soon as possible, he added.

Although the foundation of the Zionist movement remains the constructive development of Palestine, he continued, “a political struggle must be carried on now with more impotus than ever before, not morely from London–although it ranks first even now–but with every nation represented or which will be represented at the United Nations meetings.”

Emphasizing that there was no intention of crushing differences of opinion within the Jewish community, Ben Gurion stated that “no man nor any group of man should do anything that is Liable to affect the general struggle, even if done with the best of intentions, or on the protence of appearing antiraly justified. There is only one struggle–that conducted by the entire nation and its elected representatives.” He called for establishment of friendly relations with the Arab people.

The Palestine Arab Higher Committee was scheduled to meet here late today or tomorrow to ratify participation in the London conference. It is understood that in a telephone conversation yesterday with Jamal Husseini, deputy chairman of the Higher Committee, the ex-Mufti of Jerusalem urged the Palestine Arabs to attend.

The Palestine representatives are expected to come to the London meeting with demands which go even farther than those outlined at first session of the conference by the Arab League states. The Palestine Arabs object to the League’s suggestion that the High Commissioner have the right to name the provisionsal government which would precede an independent Arab state and also oppose proportional representation in the provisional government on the basis of two Arabs to one Jew, as suggested in the League’s plan.

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