Britain Urges Reich to Permit Jews to Withdraw Funds; House of Lords Discusses Evian
Menu JTA Search

Britain Urges Reich to Permit Jews to Withdraw Funds; House of Lords Discusses Evian

Download PDF for this date

Foreign Secretary Lord Plymouth told the House of Lords during a discussion of the Evian refugee-aid conference today that the British Government was examining the possibility of giving Jewish refugees sanctuary in North Rhodesia, as well as in Kenya, but stressed that refugees must be permitted to withdraw means for their support if the problem is to be solved.

The House also heard Lord Samuel declare that because of Palestine disorders that country could only be a refuge for a small number, and plead for mutual concessions by Arabs and Jews. The Bishop of Chichester advocated increased immigration to the dominions. Lord Marley expressed the House’s gratitude to President Roosevelt for convoking the Evian conference.

Lord Plymouth asserted the British Government would examine “with the greatest sympathy” the refugee problem and that in spite of “too obvious” difficulties would allow no occasion to escape that might contribute to its solution.

“His Majesty’s Government accept the recommendations of the Evian meeting which imply the obligation of fully cooperating in the work of this committee in the future,” Lord Plymouth stated, adding that the Government was examining possibility of giving refugees sanctuary in Kenya colony and North Rhodesia.

“No thickly populated country can be expected to accept persons deprived of means of livelihood and substance,” Lord Plymouth declared. “We therefore hope that countries of origin will assist in creating conditions in which the emigrants can start life in other countries with some prospect of success. The question of admission of emigrants into the dominions and their subsequent employment there is entirely a matter for the governments of the dominions concerned, to be considered in the light of circumstances prevailing at the time in the community.

Lord Plymouth said that in preparing for the Evian conference, and at the meeting itself, the London government acted in close consultation with the dominions. “this close consultation,” he declares, “will certainly be continued in regard to the committee which is to meet shortly in London. I might add that the four dominion governments who were represented at Evian will be asked to send representatives to the London committee. Undoubtedly the collaboration of the United States Government will lend incalculable prestige and authority to the work of the London committee. This work, while it breaks fresh ground, will at the same time reinforce and supplement the work which the League of Nations intends to continue.”


A plea to Arabs and Jews in Palestine to make some sacrifice to bring about appeasement of the present situation was made by lord Samuel, former Palestine High Commissioner. The Jews realize that they could not obtain 100 per cent of their demands, and the Arabs realize they could not prevent establishment of a Jewish national home, but they might be able to safeguard their own position, he said.

Lord Samuel, who is chairman of the Council for German Jewry, asserted that owing to events in Palestine the Holy Land could be a refuge for an exceeding small number. He declared there was little prospect for early improvement and expressed the conviction that the present British policy was not the one that would be successful.

Jewish refugee emigration to Australia, New Zealand, the United States and Canada, where not enough female children are being born, to assure future population increases, advocated by George Kennedy Allen Bell, 94th Bishop of Chichester. In Canada, he said, only those of French extraction are reproducing themselves at any appreciable rate. The Bishop quoted from articles dealing with the population of the four countries mentioned, and said that the most striking feature was that these countries are not producing enough girl children to maintain the number of future mothers.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund