862.4016/1800: Telegram

The Ambassador in Poland (Biddle) to the Secretary of State

242. As a result of the promulgation by Polish Government of recent decree ordering inspection of all Polish passports abroad with a view to application of the citizenship law of March 31, 1938 (Embassy’s despatches 412 and 757 April 1 and October 22, 193835) and which appears to have been designed primarily to prevent wholesale expulsion of Polish Jews from Germany and Austria the German Government yesterday began expulsion of Polish Jews. According to aforementioned decree holders of Polish passports not examined and validated by Consuls abroad will be refused admission into Poland after midnight tonight. A prominent official of the Foreign Office today informed me 7,000 Jews have already entered Poland from Germany and 15,000 more are expected today. This of course will create a grave problem for Poland especially since the refugees mainly male Jews were allowed to take only 10 marks each from Germany. The Polish Government protested when news of the expulsion order became known and proposed a 15-day extension of the time limit of the aforementioned decree to permit negotiations regarding restoration of refugees’ property but this proposal was refused by Germany. [Page 655] The Polish Government considers the German action brutal and it is intimated at the Foreign Office that certain retaliatory measures may be taken against Germans residing in Poland. Poland will continue to take measures to obtain satisfaction with regard to restoration of refugees’ property.

Repeated to Berlin and London for Rublee.36

  1. Neither printed.
  2. George Rublee, Director of the Intergovernmental Committee on Political Refugees.