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Britain Permits Registration of Refugees As Volunteers; to Be Treated As Englishmen

Foreign refugees living in England who seek to enlist in the British Army will be treated as regular British volunteers, War Secretary Leslie Hore-Belisha announced in the House of Commons tonight.

Applications from refugees will be placed on file and they may be called in limited numbers, provided their records are satisfactory, should their services be required, Hore-Belisha said.

Earlier in the week Home Secretary Sir John Anderson announced that the cases of all Germans and Austrians in England would be reviewed to avoid treating as enemies the German refugees who are friendly to the country which has offered them asylum.

Several thousand exiles have registered with refugee organizations for national service. Until today’s decision to accept refugee volunteers, they had been utilized only for passive defense activities, such as filling sandbags for defense against air raids.