Agreement Between Emir Feisal ibn Hussein and Dr. Weizmann

January 3, 1919

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Agreement Between Emir Feisal ibn Hussein and Dr. Weizmann

Introduction

During the peace conference following World War I, the Emir Feisal, son of Hussein, Sherif of Mecca, signed an agreement with Dr Chaim Weizmann supporting  the rights of the Jews in Palestine. However, in a handwritten note, the agreement was made contingent by Feisal upon fulfillment by the British of their promises to Feisal. Namely, the "Arab State" that would be formed, would include Syria. The British however, were bound by the promises they had made to France in the 1916: Sykes-Picot Agreement. Syria became a French mandate and Feisal was made king of Iraq instead. Subsequently, a spokesman for Feisal announced that "His majesty does not remember having written anything of that kind with his knowledge.

Subsequently, Weizmann averred that the Arab demands having been met, the agreement should be valid. He stated as much to the UNSCOP panel in Jerusalem: Testimony of Chaim Weizmann at UNSCOP. UNSCOP did not accept his view.

Copyright

The introduction above is copyright 2007 by Ami Isseroff. The document below is in the public domain.


Agreement Between Emir Feisal ibn Hussein and Dr. Weizmann

His Royal Highness the Emir FEISAL, representing and acting on behalf of the Arab Kingdom of Hedjaz, and Dr. CHAIM WEIZMANN, representing and acting on behalf of the Zionist Organization. mindful of the racial kinship and ancient bonds existing between the Arabs and the Jewish people, and realising that the surest means of working out the consummation of their national aspirations is through the closest possible collaboration in the development of the Arab State and Palestine, and being desirous further of confirming the good understanding which exists between them, have agreed upon the following Articles;-

ARTICLE I

The Arab State and Palestine in all their relations and undertakings shall be controlled by the most cordial goodwill and understanding and to this end Arab and Jewish duly accredited agents shall be established and maintained in the respective territories.

ARTICLE II

Immediately following the completion of the deliberations of the Peace Conference, the definite boundaries between the Arab State and Palestine shall be determined by a Commission to be agreed upon by the parties hereto.

ARTICLE III

In the establishment of the Constitution and Administration of Palestine all such measures shall be adopted as will afford the fullest guarantee for carrying into effect the British Government's Declaration of the 2nd of November, 1917.

ARTICLE IV

All necessary measures shall be taken to encourage and stimulate immigration of Jews into Palestine on a large scale, and as quickly as possible to settle Jewish immigrants upon the land through closer settlement and intensive cultivation of the soil. In taking such measures measures the Arab peasant and tenant farms shall be protected in their rights and shall be assisted in forwarding their economic development.

ARTICLE V.

No regulation nor law shall be made prohibiting or interfering in any way with the free exercise of religion; and further the free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship without discrimination or preference shell forever be allowed. No religious test shall ever be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.

ARTICLE VI

The Mohammedan Holy Places shall be under Mohammedan control.

ARTICLE VII

The Zionist Organization proposes to send to Palestine a Commission of experts to make a survey of the economic possibilities of the country, and to report upon the best means for its development. The Zionist Organisation will place the aforementioned Commission at the disposal of the Arab State for the purpose of a survey of the economic possibilities of the Arab State and to report upon the best means for its development. The Zionist Organization will use Its best efforts to assist the Arab State in providing the means for developing the natural resources and economic possibilities thereof.

ARTICLE VIII.

The parties hereto agree to act in complete accord and harmony on all matters embraced herein before the Peace congress.

ARTICLE IX

Any matters of dispute which my arise between the contracting parties shall be referred to the British Government for arbitration.

Given under our hand at LONDON.
ENGLAND, the THIRD day of
JANUARY, ONE THOUSAND NINE
HUNDRED AND EIGHTEEN.

Chaim-Weizmann.

Feisal ibn-Hussein.

RESERVATION BY THE EMIR FEISAL

If the Arabs are established as I have asked in my manifesto of January 4th addressed to the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, I will carry out what is written in this agreement. If changes are made, I cannot be answerable for failing to carry out this agreement.

Feisal ibn-Hussein

(Below is a facsimile of the signature page of the original document, showing the reservation of Feisal added in Arabic and in English)

 



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