BERNE (Oct. 22)
The Swiss Government has assured the Swiss Jewish community that it will give “sympathetic consideration” to pleas for asylum and for work permits for Jewish refugees, it was disclosed today.
Dr. Georges Brunschwig, president of the Union of Swiss Jewish Communities, told the local Jewish committee that after he had met with Marcus Feldmann, member of the seven-man Swiss Federal Council, he was assured by the proper authorities that a number of “hard-core” Jewish refugees would be admitted to Switzerland and that the Swiss authorities would reconsider their entire attitude should there be a renewal of anti-Jewish measures in Egypt.
This announcement came in the wake of the Ludwig Report which, with its disclosure earlier this week of anti-Jewish measures taken by the Swiss Government during World War II, has caused considerable comment here. While some Swiss newspapers glossed over the report, others have been sharply critical.
The report was published by the Swiss Federal Council. It was prepared by Prof. Carl Ludwig of the University of Basle, who declared that thousands of refugees, particularly Jews, had been doomed between 1933 and the end of the war by Swiss enforcement of over-rigid rules of asylum. The report sharply criticized this attitude, and stressed that Swiss asylum was “a leading principle of the Swiss state’s policy and forms part of the Swiss conception of freedom and independence.” National policy therefor, it said, “must take into account asylum for people whose lives are endangered.”