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Bernadotte’s Report to U.N. Called for Palestine Conciliation Body to Replace Him

September 20, 1948
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The very day Count Folke Bernadotte was assassinated in Jerusalem, the United Nations at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris had received his recommendation that the mediator’s post be abolished and instead a Palestine conciliation commission be established, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency learned here today.

The suggestion that the present mediation machinery be replaced is one the cardinal points in Bernadotte’s report to the U.N. which arrived from Rhodes Friday. The report which will be released tomorrow or Tuesday, lists a series of “conclusions,” including the following:

1. The Negev, which had been awarded to the Jews in the partition plan of November of 1947 would be given to the Arabs, but the Jews in return would receive all Galilee.

2. Haifa would be a free port, serving both the Arab and Jewish hinterland.

3. Lydda would be a free airport.

4. Bernadotte further proposed that the political future of the Arab areas should be determined by the inhabitants, letting them decide whether they wish to affiliate with Transjordan or establish an independent state.

In addition, Bernadotte suggested that the question of Arab refugees be divorced from the political settlement and that it be considered separately by the UN General Assembly.


Trygve Lie, United Nations Secretary-General, on his own initiative moved yesterday to reopen the whole Palestine question by putting it on the agenda of the General Assembly.

The U.N. Security Council met briefly yesterday afternoon to pay tribute to the memory of Bernadotte. It adjourned after unanimously adopting a resolution condemning the “cowardly act which appears to have been committed by a criminal Group of terrorists.”

Jacob Malik of the Soviet Union, in a brief statement on the death of Bernadotte, warned the Council that any solution which it may consider will have to be based on the partition decisions Aubrey S. Eban, Israeli spokesman compared Bernadotte to Jean Leon Jaures and Mahama Mohandas K. Gandhi, as a man aiming at nothing but the cessation of violence who fell violently by the way, like the other two. Eban pledged to the Council that it would soon be informed of “measures most drastic and far-reaching in character, with the aim of bringing the criminals to justice and reaching out with the hand of lawful authority into any circles in which a degree of responsibility for such an event may be found.”

Philip Jessup of the United States called upon the U.N. to intensify its peace-making efforts at once. The Council president, Sir Alexander Cadogan of Great Britain, condemned the murder of Bernadotte as “senseless and disastrous.” Lie said that the murder of Bernadotte and Col. Serot, could be interpreted only as a direct attempt to interfere with the U.N. in its aim to settle peacefully the Palestine problem.

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