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Switzerland Notifies Bergen-belsen Refugees They Will Be Transferred to Camp in Italy

Swiss authorities today notified the Jewish refugees transferred from Bergen-Belsen before the capitulation of Germany that they will have to leave Switzerland within a week’s time, in accordance with an understanding reached between Switzerland and the United States at the time the Swiss Government agreed to admit them to this country.

It is understood that of the 1,670 Jewish refugees who came here from Bergen-Belsen, about 1,000 are Dutch and Belgian citizens. Their respective legations have taken the responsibility for their repatriation, and they will, therefore, be permitted to remain in Switzerland a little longer. The remaining refugees, including women and children, will be deported next week to an UNRRA camp in Southern Italy, since most of them are stateless or citizens of East European countries.

The deportation of these refugees was scheduled to have taken place recently, but was postponed. However, today the refugees were notified by the Swiss authorities that there will be no further postponement. The refugees insist that they either be sent to Palestine, or permitted to return to their native lands but not via still another camp.