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February 13, 1948 The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al Hasanji (Husseini), Yasser Arafat, Mahmud Abbas

February 13, 1948 The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al Hasanji (Husseini), Yasser Arafat, Mahmud Abbas

“Toward the end of January a delegation representing all classes of Arabs form Haifa, headed by Archbishop Hakim, visited the Mufi in Cairo with the intention, it was rumored, of obtaining support for a plan to declare Haifa an ‘open city.’ It was unsuccessful. However, it is learned that all sections of the Arab national committee who feel that it is in their own interest to maintain peace in the city for as long as possible. This, and the fact that the moneyed Jewish community in Haifa wishes for peace, provides some grounds for the hope that order may be maintained there for some time. Both communities are well armed and tension of course exists. The situation depends entirely upon the control the leaders of both factions are able to maintain over their more irresponsible followers.”

Source: British In its Fortnightly Newsletter No. 61, dated February 13, 1948, the British intelligence reported the Arab effort to make Haifa an open city: Nation

February 13, 1948 The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al Hasanji (Husseini), Yasser Arafat, Mahmud Abbas

“Haj Amin el Husseini visited Damascus at the beginning of February and had talks with President Kuwatly. On 4-5 February he attended meeting of the Arab League Military Committee there, presided over by Taha el Husseini with Subhi el Hadra present. Further in the military organization of Palestine it was decided to divide the country into four major fighting zones. The Mufti proposed that each zone should have two commanders of equal status, one nominated by the Arab Higher Executive and other by the Arab League military committee. Taha el Husseine, however on a single commander for each zone and finally it was agreed that under General Ismail Safwat as Commander in Chief, Abdel Kader el Husseini should command the Jerusalem zone, Hassan Salame the Jaffa Jerusalem Road areas, Fawsi Kawujki the Nablus Tulkarm area and the southern sector should be operated under Egypt. A delegate of the Arab higher Executive is to be attached to each Commander. The Mufti returned to Cairo in time for the ten-day Arab league Council meeting there on 7 February.”

Source: British in the Fortnightly Intelligence Newsletter No. 61 issued by HQ. British Troops in Palestine: Nation

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