WASHINGTON (Jul. 12)
The United States has a responsibility to seek solutions for the world refugee problem “in the interest of freedom, of international stability and world peace, ” Senator Philip Hart, Michigan Democrat, said today when a Senate subcommittee on refugees, of which he is chairman, opened hearings on refugee questions.
James P. Rice, executive director of the United Hias Service, who appeared before the subcommittee, suggested the need for liberalization of the United States immigration laws. Senator Hart expressed agreement with him that refugee needs were linked with the national origins quota system which restricts admission to the United States.
“Every refugee is an international political problem, ” Senator Hart declared. “If we fail to act effectively, we undermine the welfare and security, not only of host nations, but our own as well. In many areas, of the world, the effectiveness of our foreign policy is directly related to the success of refugee programs in those areas. “
Roger W. Jones, Deputy Undersecretary of State for the Administration, appeared before the committee in support of a bill to appropriate $18, 200, 000 for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in addition to $6,500, 000 from the surplus food program. He told the Senate that “this Administration is doing everything in its power to continue the ongoing refugees programs and to analyze the new and potentially developing refugee situations which loom on the political horizon. “
The United States Committee for Refugees submitted a report to the Senate body listing the Palestine Arabs classified as refugees at 1,100, 000. It said that “a solid start has been made on rectification of the ration rolls. Housing has continued to improve; the worst of the dd camps have been eliminated and new structures built. “
The committee also reported that United Hias had assisted approximately 1,500 Jewish refugees from Cuba to resettle here. The report noted that United Hias had worked in cooperation with the Federal Government and the local Jewish community and had created a field office in the Cuban refugee center in Miami.