Palestine Government Issues Last Immigration Schedule Before White Paper Goes into Effect

The last immigration schedule to be issued by the Palestine Government before the terms of the MacDonald White paper of 1939 go into effect was made public here today. It will permit the entry of 900 Jewish “principal immigrants” and their wives and children under eighteen in the three-month period ending March 31, 1944, the date from which Jewish immigration into Palestine will be barred under the White Paper.

The schedule issued today calls for the admission of a total of 2,900 principal immigrants, 100 of whom will be non-Jews. However, from the 2,800 Jewish total the Government has subtracted 1,900 visas for Jews who have entered the country illegally since April, 1939, and who were never charged against the 75,000 total allowed by the White Paper.

Although, about 30,000 of these 75,000 visas still have not been issued owing to war-time difficulties, the British Government announced last year that they would be made available at any time after March 31, 1944 when it is possible for Jewish immigrants to leave Europe for Palestine. It is not expected, however, that these unexpended visas will be issued at three-month intervals as has been the procedure up to now.

The present system was based upon the absorptive capacity of the country, and the three-month allotment of visas was termed the “Labor Immigration Schedule.” In the future, however, all visas will come from the unexpended 30,000, and will be issued when Jews are released from occupied territory to come to Palestine, rather than to the basis of the need for labor within the country.

The term of office of Sir Harold MacMichael, Palestine High Commissioner, has been extended for six months, it was officially announced today. Sir Harold’s term originally expired in March, 1943, and was extended at that time for one year. He has been in office since 1937.

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