Vichy Decree Permitting Emigration of Interned Refugees Published Here
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Vichy Decree Permitting Emigration of Interned Refugees Published Here

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A copy of a decree issued by the French Government in Vichy permitting emigration, except for “special cases,” of interned refugees who can prove their ability to enter some other country was made public here today by the American Committee to Save Refugees, headed by Prof. Walter Rautenstrauch, who said it had been forwarded by inmates of the Camp du Vernet.

Issuance of the decree, it was stated, served to dispel fears that anti-Nazi refugees would be turned over to the German Government, in accordance with the clause of the armistice agreement providing for return of any German nationals demanded by the Reich. The copy of the decree follows:


“Refugees from Germany, ex-Austria, Danzig and the Czechoslovaks born in the Sudeten area.

“These foreigners were in a camp visited by the Kundt Commission. Please give me the names of those foreigners who want to leave the country and who fulfill the conditions stipulated by Paragraph 1. With the exception of special cases, I will comply with their request.

“In effect, since the Kundt Commission, after having consulted the list of these foreigners, did not make use of the rights to which the German authorities are entitled by Paragraph 2 of Article 19 of the Armistice Terms, I believe, and this in accordance with the Secretary of State to Foreign Affairs, that they are to be allowed to emigrate.

“NOTE: Foreigners in this category who wish to go to a country other than their country of origin will be sent (whether they are at liberty or in a camp) to a locality chosen by the Prefect of Bouches du Rhone where a camp will be set up.

“IF: 1) they have the material means of making the trip

“2) they have:

“I – either a visa to a foreign country and the necessary transit visas

“II – or a letter from the consulate of the country where they plan to go, informing them that a visa has been granted and asking them to call for its delivery

“III – or a simple letter from this consulate asking them to present themselves for an examination of their situation and a medical examination in view of granting them the visa.

“Exit Permits: When a foreigner has been transferred to this special camp in the Bouches du Rhone, he will be considered as allowed to leave France and the Perfect of this Department will automatically deliver an exit permit which will be stamped on the document described above.”

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