The Mexican Embassy to the Department of State


Reference is made to the various communications of Mr. Charles W. Yost, Assistant Chief, Division of European Affairs, of the Department [Page 314] of State, to Secretary Anzorena, of this Embassy, on the Spanish Republican refugees in North Africa.

As confirmation of the information transmitted verbally by Secretary Anzorena to Messrs. Laurence Duggan81 and Charles W. Yost, the Embassy now advises having received the following data from Mexico:

A Committee has been organized in Mexico, D. F., to study the various aspects of the plan of receiving the Spanish Republican refugees from North Africa. Mr. Felix F. Palavicini, an Official of the Secretaría de Gobernación, both [sic] representing the Mexican Government, and Messrs. Ginés Langa Tremiño and Jerónimo Gamariz Latorre, Spaniards now residing in Mexico, form the Committee.

The Mexican Government is willing to consider the entry of those Spanish Republicans whose immigration may be deemed as favoring the national economy; preference to be given to farmers, fishermen, specialized mechanics, etc. Mr. Alejandro Quijano has offered that the Mexican Association of the Red Cross and the International Red Cross would gladly cooperate.

The Committee in due time, would take up with the Secretaría de Gobernación the question of the issuance of permits and the manner of issuance of necessary documents. As to transportation, the Mexican Government would avail itself of the offer of the United States Government, which is appreciated, of the United States War Department bearing the full cost of transporting the refugee across the ocean. Other offers as the one by the Joint Antifascist Refugee Committee may materialize into the bearing of rail transportation costs from the port of debarkation to the Mexican border.

As reported to Messrs. Duggan and Yost, the Committee has requested that “U.S. Consulates in Algiers, Casablanca and Tunis urgently formulate a list of the Spanish refugees and their families who wish to go to Mexico, preference being given to farmers, fishermen, mechanics, specialized workers and persons who may easily adapt themselves to the economy of Mexico”; the Committee suggests that U.S. Consulates engage the assistance, as advisers, of Messrs. Salvador García Muñoz and Lorenzo Carbonell Santacruz, in Oran, José Alonso Mallol and Antonio Pérez Torreblanca, in Casablanca, and Julián Sánchez Eroftalbe and Ildefonso Torregorsa García, in Tunis. It was pointed out in the communication received from Mexico that these data were urgently needed with a view to examining at once the feasibility of the refugees in question being admitted into Mexico.

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The information furnished by Mr. Yost in his letter of June 16, 1943,82 was immediately transmitted to Mexico, on that date. The reply dated the 18th was received on the 19th, stating that, in order to decide on the entry of the refugees, it was indispensable that the data requested be furnished.

  1. Adviser on Political Relations.
  2. Presumably Mr. Yost’s letter of June 11, to the Third Secretary of the Mexican Embassy in which he stated that since the North African authorities desired to close on June 15 all of the internment camps in that area except those devoted to Axis internees, the question of how to dispose of the approximately 2,000 Spanish Republicans who desired to accept the Mexican Government’s invitation to proceed to Mexico was of the greatest urgency, and that he would appreciate anything that could be done to expedite a final decision by the Mexican Government (840.48 Refugees/3899a).