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Britain Investigating Conditions in Internment Camps; Eden Promises Improvement

July 10, 1940
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

War Secretary Anthony Eden announced in the House of Commons today that he has launched an investigation into conditions prevailing at internment camps. The announcement climaxed a wave of criticism by Newspapers and prominent Britons both of indiscriminate internment of refugees and their treatment in the camps.

Eden said that any present deficiencies in the camps were due to the recent influx of internees and promised that every effort would be made to improve conditions.

Meanwhile, internment of refugees is resulting in considerable confusion with regard to emigration to the United States, since it is estimated that half of some 27,000 refugees awaiting visas here have been interned and thus are unable to keep appointments at the United States Consulate for medical and other examinations. To facilitate handling the cases of internees, the Consulate has opened an immigration department branch at Liverpool.

It is understood that the authorities are anxious not to interfere with the emigration of refugees and are considering, in conjunction with the American Consulate, methods of procedure under which the internees would be enabled to proceed with their arrangements. A number of internees, it was learned, have already obtained their visas and have been released for emigration.

The Star reports that the question of internment has resulted in considerable uneasiness among Parliamentarians and that it may soon be the subject of a debate in Commons.

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