867N.01/1417: Telegram

The Chargé in the United Kingdom (Johnson) to the Secretary of State

181. The Palestine discussions opened today with separate meetings between the British and Arab representatives on the one hand and between British and Jewish representatives on the other.

[Page 705]

Mr. Chamberlain27 in his speeches of welcome said that it was the task of statesmanship when faced by what might appear to be a deadlock between two peoples to achieve a compromise on the basis of justice and appealed for concentration on the realities of the present situation giving due weight to all essential facts and endeavoring to appreciate each other’s point of view.

The problem of a united Palestine Arab delegation is still unsolved and the Defence Party representatives were not present at the opening meeting. The British Government has issued a statement that its efforts to achieve a united delegation are continuing, that it is glad to have opportunity to enter into consultation with Palestine Arab leaders selected from parties other than the Defence Party; and that in view of its anxiety to exclude no important section of opinion, it will also be glad, if agreement on the composition of single Palestine delegation proves impossible, to hold separate consultations with the Defence Party delegation.

  1. Neville Chamberlain, British Prime Minister.