867n.01/284: Telegram

The Ambassador in Great Britain (Harvey) to the Secretary of State

335. A note has been received from the Foreign Office24 dealing with convention between the British Government and the United States Government on the subject of the Palestine mandate in which it is stated that the British Government will shortly be in a position to submit a counter draft based on the State Department’s draft.

The note continues as follows:

“It seems however to His Majesty’s Government important that the analogous conventions which the French Government are negotiating with your Government regarding the French mandated territories should be as far as possible identical in form and substance with the Anglo–American conventions and I am therefore anxious in the first instance to consult the French Government on certain points.

Meanwhile the final and formal approval of the terms of the Syrian and Palestine mandates by the Council of the League at their last session renders it desirable that I should offer at once the following explanation regarding article 8 of the Palestine mandate. In the State Department’s memorandum25 an alternative text to that given in my note of May 15th [16th?]26 is suggested in order to make clearer the precise intention of this article. During the recent discussions at the Council of the League His Majesty’s Government learnt that the relevant sentences of the corresponding article (number 5) in the Syrian mandate had been carefully prepared by the French Government to meet the wishes of the United States Government who had agreed to accept it; and that the wording of these sentences was identical with the alternative text now suggested by the State Department for article 8 of the Palestine mandate except for the substitution of the words ‘shall not be applicable’ for the words ‘are suspended’. In pursuance therefore of their consistent policy of keeping the texts of the A mandates as far as possible identical His Majesty’s Government invited the Council of the League to adopt for article 8 of the Palestine mandate the wording of the corresponding sentences of article 5 of the Syrian Mandate.”

Article 8 as finally approved by the League Council reads as follows:

“The privileges and immunities of foreigners in receipt of [including] the benefits of consular jurisdiction and protection as formerly enjoyed by capitulation or usage in the Ottoman Empire shall not be applicable in Palestine.

Unless the powers whose nationals enjoyed the aforementioned privileges and immunities on August 1st 1914 shall have previously renounced [Page 302] the right to their reestablishment or shall have agreed to their non-application for a specified period these privileges and immunities shall at the expiration of the mandate be immediately reestablished in their entirety or with such modifications as may have been agreed upon between the powers concerned.”

  1. Dated Aug. 2.
  2. Of July 12, p. 287.
  3. Ante, p. 280.