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350,000 Jews in North Africa Alarmed over Near East Situation, Vichy Anti-jewish Acts

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Over 350,000 in Morocco, Algiers and Tunis are now watching with anxiety both the developments in the Arab countries of the Near East and the growing anti-Jewish legislation in Vichy, which is applicable also to Jews in French colonies.

Following the example of the Petain government in Vichy, the authorities in Casablanca have started rounding up alien Jews, most of whom are refugees. A number of alien Jewish families have, as a result of these raids, been sent to special camps.

Simultaneously, anti-Jewish propaganda among the Moslem population in Morocco and other parts of North Africa is assuming serious proportions. The propaganda is being conducted chiefly by Nazi “tourists” who are pouring into North Africa through Spanish Morocco. Exploiting the developments in Iraq and Syria, the Nazis are trying to incite the Moslems against the Jews in Morocco, Tunis and Algiers by spreading false rumors that the Jews in Palestine are helping the British to fight the Arabs in Iraq and that the Jews in Iraq are acting as British spies.

There are some 110,000 Jews in Algiers, 60,000 in Tunis and about 160,000 in French Morocco, in addition to the 13,000 Jews in Spanish Morocco and the 7,000 in Tangier. Despite political differences, the Jews and the Arabs in French Morocco have been living in amity. The Sultan of Morocco, who has always been under French influence, has greatly contributed towards the understanding between the Jews and the Arabs there. At present, however, the Sultan is not in a position to prevent the carrying out in Morocco of the new French anti-Jewish laws.

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