840.48 Refugees/3023a: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Cuba (Braden)

633. From Bonsal. Mr. George Warren has just been to see me about the refugees from the Guinee and the Sao Thome who are, he says, still at Tiscornia although some of them landed in Cuba nearly 4 months ago. Mr. Warren states that the Joint Distribution Committee is being overwhelmed by appeals from the relatives of these people and by stories concerning alleged bad and discriminatory treatment.

For example, the Spanish steamer Marques de Comillas arrived at Habana late in July. The examination of some 200 Spanish passengers by the Cuban authorities took only 4 hours. Fees for medical examinations were only 2 or 3 dollars whereas the refugees from the aforementioned vessels were charged $10.

I am fully aware of the limitations on any action which the Embassy might take in this matter. However, I believe it would be advisable for the Cuban authorities to be fully informed as to the interest which the situation has aroused in this country. [Bonsal.]