600 Refugees Arrested in Italy; Italian Jews Included in Civil Mobilization

Six hundred Polish and German Jews have been arrested throughout the country among the elements considered “dangerous.” More arrests are expected.

Contrary to Jews’ fears that Italy’s entry into the war would bring mass arrests, no drastic measures have been taken against Italian Jews. It is believed only a small percentage of the Jews will be interned for the duration, despite the campaign of Jew-baiters for internment of all Jews.

It is expected that most Italian Jews will be utilized for the war machine in the civilian mobilization. While under the racial laws Jews are excluded from military service, a recent decree regarding civilian mobilization does not mention Jews. The authorities in several cities have confirmed that Jews are included in the mobilization unless instructions to the contrary are issued.

Many Jewish physicians barred from practice several months ago will be drafted for service in military hospitals.

It is reported without confirmation that 3,000 Polish and German Jews will be concentrated in a small town in southern Italy, free to move about within a certain district. The Italian Government is allotting a small allowance for feeding of those concentrated.

In recent weeks 1,000 foreign Jews have left for the Balkans. Before the outbreak of the war 92 Polish Jews went to Tangier from Genca and 250 left for Palestine. Several hundred are believed to have succeeded in leaving for Yugoslavia, Bulgaria and Rumania after the outbreak of the war. One hundred and fifty obtained visas for Turkey.

On hundred and fifty refugees with United States visas have been unable to secure passage. Plans had been worked out to organize transportation of this group to the United States via the U.S.S.R., but after the French armistice request an attempt was made to secure transit through France to Lisbon.

Two hundred Polish and German Jews selected in Germany, Switzerland and Italy for colonization in the Dominican Republic were trapped here by Italy’s entry into the war. According to Solomon Trone, representative of the Dominican Republic Settlement Association of New York, this group will be directed through France to Lisbon as soon as feasible.

Refugees with Palestine certificates are trying to reach their destination through the Balkans. Consuls are facilitating their transit.

Emannuel Rosen, who set up an office in Genoa on behalf of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee to facilitate transportation of emigrants, is studying the problem of refugees in Italy at his Genoa headquarters.

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