840.50 UNRRA/7–2545: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

7488. 1. UNRRA administration has requested views of US Govt on national status of Jewish displaced persons and refugees. In particular they wish to know whether US concurs with views expressed in memorandum circulated by UK representative, at request of Foreign Office to members of displaced persons sub-committee last August (UNRRA document TDP/E) 44 (38, sent to Dept in despatch No. 17544 of Aug 17, 194471). Memorandum states that since Atlantic City resolution72 provides against discrimination on grounds of race, religion or political belief and since UNRRA has accepted criterion of national status and place of former settled residence rather than religion or race in dealing with displaced persons, HMG73 consider UNRRA is “precluded from dealing with Allied Jews as though they formed category separate from other persons whose nationality they share”. For same reasons Jews of ex-enemy nationality or stateless Jews should not be treated as separate national category. Memorandum further states that HMG in assessing the [Page 1179] status of refugees recognize only those categories that are constituted either by a particular nationality, by the condition of “statelessness”, or by the fact that they cannot be repatriated to their country of origin.

2. An UNRRA official told us informally that UNRRA is concerned with question in connection with policy toward Jewish voluntary societies working with displaced persons in Germany. Under Article IV paragraph 2 of UNRRA agreement and by SHAEF directive UNRRA is responsible for supervising and coordinating activities of voluntary societies.74 Administration feels that in accordance with resolution 9 of first session of Council which states “welfare services administered by or in cooperation with administration shall be provided without discrimination because of race, creed or political belief”, Jewish voluntary societies should not limit relief work solely to Jewish persons.

  1. Not printed.
  2. Resolution No. 9, Woodbridge, UNRRA, vol. iii, p. 49.
  3. His Majesty’s Government.
  4. See SHAEF Administrative Memorandum 39 (Revised), Appendix G, Woodbridge, UNRRA, vol. iii, pp. 405 ff; see especially p. 406.