Eight-point Program on Rescue of Jews Presented to British Government

The Board of Deputies of British Jews today approved a program of action to aid the Jews in Nazi-held European countries, prepared by the Joint Foreign Committee of the Board. The plan suggests to the British Government that it take the following steps:

1.) Announce that to the best of the country’s possibilities, subject to all the necessary safeguards in connection with the security of the country, asylum will be afforded to Jewish refugees. A similar announcement to be made concerning colonies and other territories under control of the Home Government.

2.) Endeavor to secure a similar offer from the United States and the other Allies regarding territory under their control.

3.) Approach the Dominions to offer refuge. Such offers to include facilities for transit to other countries.

4.) Use the Government’s good offices to secure offers of refuge from the United States and the governments of Latin America.

5.) Give adequate recognition to the specially favorable opportunities for refuge available in Palestine as a result of the country’s geographic proximity to the countries from which the refugees could be transferred.

6.) Acceptance by the United Kingdom, the United States and other of the United Nations of the ultimate responsibility for providing asylum for the refugees, whether such sanctuary is given by the United Nations or by neutral countries.

7.) Encourage neutrals to help in the rescue and reception of refugees, with pledges by the United Nations that (a) they will receive in territories under their control such of the refugees as can be subsequently removed from the neutral countries; (b) such refugees that can not be transferred during the war will be transferred after the war; (c) the cost of maintaining the refugees and extending other practical assistance will be borne by the United Nations.

8.) The satellite countries, one or two of which have already shown their readiness to allow Jews to depart, should, through available neutral diplomatic channels, be encouraged to extend such emigration opportunities in the future.

A statement by the Board, accompanying the program, declares that the above steps, if taken immediately by the Government, on its own initiative, would save the lives of thousands of people. It suggests that the German Government be approached through appropriate channels and asked to allow the Jews to leave territory under German control; and that neutral nations should be requested to approach Germany jointly, in their own name, with the same proposal. The Deputies also suggest that perhaps the Pope might agree to associate himself with such a proposal by the neutral nations.

Discussing suitable machinery to carry out the practical measures suggested, the Board of Deputies also proposes that the British Government create a special agency with which the United States and other of the United Nations could later associate themselves.

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