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1,800 Jews Held in Italian Concentration Camps

Approximately 1,800 Jewish refugees are now interned in Italian concentration camps. An estimated 1,400 others, nearly all women and children, are still at liberty, principally in the cities of Milan and Rome.

The largest group of interned, about 1,000, are concentrated in barracks near the village of Cosenza in southern Italy. Although the accommodations are improvised and wanting in some provisions, principally heating and toilet facilities, they are generally praised as sufficiently comfortable, considering the circumstances. Continuous and effective efforts are being made to improve accommodations, Italian authorities being particularly efficient in acting on suggestions of interned refugees and camp officials.

The interned enjoy a maximum amount of liberty although under strict surveillance. All forms of recreation, and particularly sports, are encouraged. This latter activity has reached the point where teams of “all stars” selected from among the refugees have several times engaged, and usually beaten, local village soccer teams. Some of the refugees had been big names in European soccer circles in pre-Hitler days.