501.BB Palestine/11–2948: Telegram

The Consul at Jerusalem (Burdett) to the Secretary of State


1503. Meeting held yesterday at Government House between Colonel Dayan, CO Israeli forces Jerusalem, and Colonel Abdullah Tel of Arab Legion in presence of United Nations observers and Truce Commission. Tentative agreement reached on establishment “complete and sincere” cease-fire for Jerusalem area extending from Beit Jala and Bethlehem in south to Ramallah in north and Latrun on west. Freedom of movement to be permitted within present lines but no movement in no man’s land. Proposed concluding statement expresses intention holding additional talks to put into effect other provisions truce and ameliorate conditions in area. Next meeting scheduled for 30th after observers complete delineation no man’s land.

Appendix to July 7 Mount Scopus agreement also prepared providing for relief 50% Jewish personnel each fortnight and food convoy each fortnight. Intention expressed to negotiate new comprehensive accord on Mount Scopus. This appendix should eliminate one cause friction Jerusalem considered by Dayan prerequisite any real ceasefire.

Consul General feels atmosphere during meeting indicative definite desire on part both parties terminate fighting Jerusalem. Both commanders advanced practical suggestions for achieving objective. Statements by Dayan re broadening accord and reaching agreement on basis Jerusalem problems particularly significant since apparently acting on instructions from PGI. Contrary to previous meetings questions approached as first step to lasting peace instead effort obtain tactical advantage prior resumption fighting.

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Sent Department 1503, Department pass Cairo 140, Gadel 11, London 35. Pouched Tel Aviv 11, Amman, Jidda, repeated Damascus 48, Baghdad 29, Beirut 100.