London (Aug. 12)
A British Foreign Office statement issued tonight said that all “illegal” immigrants to Palestine would be sent to Cyprus and elsewhere.
At the same time, a Foreign Office spokesman said that it was logical to assume that the first to be deported to Cyprus would be the 1,500 persons aboard three refugee vessels in Haifa Bay and the estimated 1,350 on two vessels which were brought into Haifa today by British destroyers. (See page 2 and 3.)
The statement said that the British Government appreciated the fact that many of the “illegal” immigrants had suffered considerable hardships, and, therefore, all reasonable measures will be taken to safeguard their well-being. It declared that continuation of such “illegal” immigration would have a harmful effect on the eventual solution of the Palestine problem.
BRITAIN ASKS U.S. TO PROHIBIT PUBLICATION OF ZIONIST APPEALS FOR FUNDS
Meanwhile, it was reliably reported today that Britain has made representations to the United States Government with regard to publication in America of Zionist appeals for money to transport Jewish refugees. It was indicated that U.S. authorities have agreed to look into the matter.
A Reuter report said that “there is reason to believe” that most of the funds financing the so-called “illegal” immigration of Jews from Europe to Palestine has come from Zionist groups in the United States. “These have been conducting their appeals quite openly in the columns of American newspapers,” the report said, adding that “appeals of this nature are illegal both in Britain and in Palestine, but under U.S. law the money collected in this way apparently has so far been exempt from taxation on the grounds that it was for a charitable purpose.”
Britain’s note to the United States is part of the full-fledged diplomatic campaign launched by the government in an effort to halt Jewish “illegal” immigration to Palestine at the points of departure. The move completes a series of diplomatic representations inviting cooperation in preventing Jews from leaving Europe for Palestine, which now have been addressed to most of the governments on the European continent.
POLAND YIELDS TO BRITISH DEMAND TO CLOSE BORDERS TO FLEEING JEWS
It was revealed here today that the Polish Government has informed the Foreign Office that measures will be taken to tighten border controls to prevent Jews from leaving the country without permission. Other governments who were asked by Britain “to assist in control of illegal Jewish emigration to Palestine” at the departure end have similarly notified the Foreign Office of their readiness to comply with its request.
A Foreign Office spokesman today said that Britain has addressed a similar request to the Greek Government. A Reuter report from Athens tonight said that after receiving the British statement, Greek police visited the local representative of the Jewish Agency. The full list of countries to which such notes are known to have been sent includes the Soviet Union, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Rumania, Greece, France, Italy, Belgium, Holland, Mexico and Panama. No reply has yet been received from the Soviet Union.
The inclusion of Mexico and Panama in the list of countries asked to prevent Jewish “illegal” immigration to Palestine followed representations made last week by the Foreign Office to the embassies of these countries in London. The British demanded that a careful check be made by these governments an the issuance of visas to Jewish refugees in Europe, emphasizing that many Jews arriving “illegally” in Palestine hold Mexican and Panamanian visas, enabling them to leave Europe.