BASEL (Aug. 21)
Approximately 9,000 more Jews now held in concentration camps in unoccupied France will be deported to Nazi-held Eastern Europe before the and of this month, the Basler National Zeitung, a leading Swiss daily newspaper reported today.
Describing the brutal conditions under which 4,000 Jews were deported from unoccupied France recently to do slave labor in the coal mines of Polish Silesia, the Swiss democratic paper states that most of the deportees were in a lamentable physical condition after a winter of privation in which they had had little to subsist on except turnip soup. Though the deportees, horded in cattle trains, were to travel twenty days to the place of their destination, they were not provided with food or any other supplies for the journey, the Basler National Zeitung establishes.
The Quakers, according to the correspondent of the National Zeitung, have opened a fund with which to provide food for future deportees, but it is admitted that this will only prove a drop in the bucket as far as relieving the wholesale misery.
SWITZERLAND ORDERS ESCAPED REFUGEES TO RETURN TO OCCUPIED FRANCE
The Basler National Zeitung sharply protested against the action of the Swiss Government this week, ordering the expulsion of all refugees who succeeded in escaping from occupied France and other Axis-held territories into Switzerland. The order provides that such refugees who entered the country since August 11 be returned to the places from whence they fled.
Swiss Federal authorities today considered the question of making this order retroactive to July 31. They assert that the number of refugees, principally Jews, seeking to cross from France into Switzerland is growing daily. Reporting that many of the refugees have already been deported by the Swiss authorities, the Basler National Zeitung, in its article condemning these expulsions, declares that the Swiss Federal Government is assuming “a horrible responsibility.”
“Indescribably gruesome scenes have taken place at the border,” the Swiss paper writes. “Nobody can doubt that such refugees are threatened with certain death. Many cantonal governments share the belief with an overwhelming majority of the Swiss people that this means abandonment of right of asylum which, in view of the frightful fate of racial refugees, cannot be justified.” A similar protest was made this week by another Swiss paper La Sentinelle.