Lexicon of Terms

The Provisional State Council (Mo'etzet Hamedina Hazmanit)

The Provisional State Council was established on the eve of the termination of the British Mandate for Palestine, on 14 May, 1948. Its task was to serve as both a legislative and executive authority, until the provisional government was chosen by an elected Constituent Assembly. Haim Weizmann was elected as President of the Council, and its chairman was Joseph Sprintzak. Despite what was said above, due to the delay in the holding of elections to the Constituent Assembly because of the war situation, a provisional government was set up, headed by David Ben Gurion, and with the participation of 13 members of the Provisional State Council from Mapai, Mapam, the General Zionists, Aliya Hadasha, Hamizrahi, Hapo'el Hamizrahi and Agudat Yisrael. In addition to the members of the Provisional Government there were another 21 members in the Council. Due to the difficulty of members to reach the meetings of the Council in Tel Aviv because of the fighting, 27 replacements were appointed. The organization and working procedures of the Provisional State Council were affected by its declared temporary nature, the on-going War of Independence, procedures and customs of the Zionist Congress, and the Assembly of Representatives, as well as the problematic relations between the Provisional State Council and the Provisional Government. The Provisional State Council continued to serve until the Constituent Assembly was elected, and its last meeting was held on 3 February, 1949.

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