VICHY (Feb. 5)
More than 2,000 visas were granted last week by the French authorities to Jewish refugees possessing visas for overseas countries, it was reliably reported here today.
An additional 600 visas were granted to refugees who were transferred from the Gurs and other camps to Les Milles, where a “departure camp” was established two months ago.
The latter category, including mostly German and Ozech refugees, are awaiting transit visas. The authorities and the HIAS-TCA Emigration Association are now attending to this matter.
A new cold wave and a deterioration of the food situation are aggravating the plight of refugees in the camps. They chiefly lack fats–which are scarce throughout the country–and warm clothes. The interfaith committee on the care of interned refugees has been unable to satisfy even the most elementary needs of the refugees owing to a lack of sufficient funds and also the extreme difficulties encountered in obtaining foodstuffs, medicines and woolen articles.
Bad conditions both inside and outside the camps, coupled with undernourishment, justify fears that there will be increased mortality among children and old people and that the health of the remaining refugees will be permanently impaired.