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Mussolini May Postpone Expulsions After Talk on Refugees with Chamberlain

Jewish circles said today there was reason to hope Premier Benito Mussolini would extend the March 12 deadline for emigration of foreign Jews in Italy. It was learned from official sources that the refugee question was one of the principal topics of discussion between Mussolini and Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain.

The principal talk on this subject was held during Thursday’s meeting. While no definite agreement was reached, Premier Mussolini’s response was described as willing to cooperate as far as he was able, but he seemed uncertain as to what plans he had in mind and the extent to which he could cooperate. It was definitely stated in official circles that Ethiopia was at no time under discussion as a place for Jewish settlement.

Mr. Chamberlain is understood to have definitely informed Il Duce of Great Britain’s close interest in the work of the Intergovernmental Refugee Committee and Anglo-American cooperation to solve the refugee problem.

Further official information established that Pope Pius and Cardinal Pacelli, in their audiences Friday with Mr. Chamberlain, expressed views on the racial question in more definite terms than previously indicated, the Pope declaring he considered it a matter of the greatest importance and was anxious for a quick and just solution.

Significance also was attached to talk Friday between British Ambassador Lord Perth and United States Ambassador William Phillips, in which, it was disclosed, the refugee question was an important topic.

Jewish circles, inspired with hope after Mr. Chamberlain’s visit, believe that amelioration of their position may be expected, but that this is dependent to some extent on the progress made by the Intergovernmental Refugee Committee. If definite plans are worked out there, it is believed that Italy is prepared to cooperate.

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