Japan Announces Deportation of Polish and Czech Jews from Shanghai

The Japanese authorities today announced over the Shanghai radio that Jewish refugees from Poland and Czechoslovakia stranded in Shanghai will be deported to Poland. Nothing was mentioned with regard to the Jewish refugees from Germany who constitute the majority of the 20,000 refugees marooned in Shanghai.

Direct reports from Shanghai received by Jewish organizations here state that the Jewish refugees there continue to be maintained on funds of the Joint Distribution Committee. Though the Shanghai radio announced that the deportation of the Polish and Czech Jews to Poland will be conducted under the supervision of a special committee set up by the Japanese authorities, Jewish quarters here doubt whether the deportations will actually be carried out. It is pointed out that such deportation would involve the crossing of Soviet territory and the Soviet-German war fronts, and that this would be impossible under the present circumstances.

The office of the Agudas Israel in Switzerland today received a cabled message from Shanghai that all refugee rabbis and talmudic students there are safe. Telegraphic communication between Jewish organizations in Switzerland and the Jewish refugee groups in Shanghai have been maintained without interruption since Japan’s entrance into the war. The economic situation of the rabbis and the talmudic students stranded in Shanghai is especially precarious in view of the fact that their contact with friends and relatives in America from whom they used to receive individual support, has been broken.

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