26 April 1948
UNITED NATIONS PALESTINE COMMISSION
Communication Received from United Kingdom
Delegation Re Commission’s Letter on Urgent
The following communication, concerning the Directive for-the General Officer Commanding and the question of access to Haifa after 15 May, has been received from Mr. Fletcher-Cooke of the United Kingdom Delegation.
UNITED KINGDOM DELEGATION TO THE UNITED NATIONS
Empire State Building, New York 1, N.Y.
24th April, 1948
My dear Bunch,
May I refer to my letter of the 17th April in which I conveyed to you for the information of the Commission certain additional observations which had been received from His Majesty’s Government on the contents of your letter to me of the 9th April.
2. I duly received your letter of the 20th April in which you informed me that the Commission had reserved their position with regard to paragraph 3 of my letter of the 17th April, in which it was pointed that there would not be any consultations with the Commission concerning the Directive for the General Officer Commanding. The Commission’s reservation in this matter has been brought to the notice of file Majesty’s Government.
3. As regards the question of access to Haifa after the 15th May 1948, raised under the heading (B) – Administration, item (4) of your letter of the 9th April, it is the intention that all persons shall have access to Haifa after the 15th May, 1948, without let or hindrance as far as the British Security Forces are concerned, provided that they do not take any action forbidden by the Proclamation issued by the General Officer Commanding in accordance with the term of his Directive.
4. It is presumed that if the Commission wished to visit Haifa, they would inform the General Officer Commanding in advance. It is also presumed that the Commission would not wish to go to Haifa if by doing so they would clearly prejudice security arrangements, as might be the case if they came en masse when it was known that one or other party intended to attack them. Provided the military authorities were informed in advance, there would seem to be no reason why individual members of the Commission should not visit Haifa at any time.
J. Fletcher-Cooke (signed)
Mr. Ralph J. Bunche,
Principal Secretary to the United Nations
Commission on Palestine,
United Nations, Lake Success.