LISBON (Jun. 19)
American refugee-aid organizations today laid plans for coping with the refugee problem, newly complicated by Washington’s order withholding immigration visas from exiles who have close relatives remaining in German territory.
A program of joint action to aid refugees stranded here and facing arrest for overstaying their temporary residence permits was decided upon at a meeting last night in which the Joint Distribution Committee, the American Friends Service Committee and the Unitarian refugee organization participated. Morrie C. Troper of the J.D.C. presided.
The conference arranged for a survey of the country’s refugee problem to ascertain emigration possibilities and considered the plight of refugees who have been promised American visas but will not receive them under the new regulations.
Reference was made to the new U.S. Treasury regulations requiring a license for transfer of funds to Portugal, but decided to await clarification of the situation. The decision of Portuguese banks not to accept checks drawn on American banks, which is seriously embarrassing the local American colony, is also hampering the work of relief agencies.
The conference also took up the predicament of some 400 refugees who left for America from Marseille on three French ships, the Alsina, the Monviso and the Wyoming, but are now stranded in Casablanca because of the refusal of the authorities to permit the ships to proceed. The refugees are concentrated in a camp 100 kilometers from Casablanca. Organizations here are seeking to arrange for a ship en route to New York from Lisbon to visit Casablanca and pick up refugees holding American visas. They are also making an effort to arrange for the sending of an American delegate from Lisbon to Casablanca to see what assistance can be rendered.