501.BB Palestine/6–249: Telegram

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


395. Approach to Jerusalem settlement advanced in Deptel [Unpal] 124 to Lausanne [Bern]1 appears excellent in principle. Would involve direct negotiations under PCC appointed chairman and mutual agreement between parties to greatest extent possible. Questions not agreed on to be arbitrated by chairman whose decision binding. Procedure should provide maximum satisfaction to local populations, solution disputed points with maximum equity and result conforming to UN resolution re Jerusalem. Terms of reference could be so defined that settlement could form part of PCC proposals for Jerusalem now under consideration and so limited that special committee would not conflict with Jerusalem sub-committee of PCC. Believe [Page 1085] essential negotiators work on premise entire area of Jerusalem will be permanently demilitarized and neutralized. In addition to territorial delimitations and public utilities, committee should consider “right of passage” to such places as Scopus and holy places and “right of residence” by Jews and Arabs in each other’s zone while intimately bound up with location territorial demarcation line. Account also should be taken of fact settlement reached would become part of permanent peace treaty and must fit into overall framework of treaty.

Necessary [to] estimate reactions parties directly involved.

[Here follow the estimates that Jordan would probably welcome the proposals, especially the provision for arbitration; that the Palestinian Arabs, with objections, would probably accept the proposals; and that the Israelis would likely be opposed, anticipating greater benefits by direct negotiations. There also follow personal comments on possible arbitrators.]

Sent Department 395, repeated Geneva 19 for USDel PCC, Amman 30.

  1. Dated May 31, p. 1079.