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Continued Persecution in “protectorate” May Hamper Reich Exodus, Emerson Tells League

August 13, 1939
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

A warning that Jewish emigration from the Reich may be hampered if persecution of Jews continued in Bohemia-Moravia and Slovakia is made by Sir Herbert Emerson, League of Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, in his official report on the international refugee situation to the 20th session of the League Assemble.

Expressing doubt whether his office can be available to finance Jewish emigration from former Czecho-Slovakia on a large scale, Sir Herbert declares: “If persecution of Jews in Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia were to create still another category of refugees the inevitable result would be to postpone a solution of the problem of Jewish emigration from German territory.”

The report dwells at length on the situation of refugees from Czecho-Slovakia who crossed into Poland. The Polish Government, it disclosed, made clear to Sir Herbert that, “having regard to their own Jewish problem,” the Polish authorities will not permit Jewish refugees from Czech territory to remain in Poland. They must be evacuated as soon as possible, it is stated, and measures for their evacuation are now under consideration.

The High Commissioner praises the efforts of world Jewry in assistance to the persecuted especially acknowledging the cooperation and practical assistance received from the Joint Distribution Committee. He estimates that $75,000,000 has been spent on refugee work since Hitler’s advent in 1933, most of which came form Jewish organizations. While more money is needed, less can now be expected from private organizations he points out.

It is estimated that at least 60,000 Reich Jews found new homes in 1938, the majority of them being taken by the United States, Palestine, Australia and South American countries. Reporting on possibilities for refugee settlement in British Guiana, the Dominican Republic and other territories investigated by official bodies, Sir Herbert states that in the Dominican Republic there is available for colonization an area aggregating 2,700,000 acres, with climatic conditions favorable and health conditions reasonably good.

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