Far East, Companion Journal to The Prisoner of War, Vol. I, No. II, November 1945

enjoyed by the repatriates. One ex­ prisoner who came from Durham County had been a farmer before the war. His physique had enabled him to endure the heavy railway V ork. At the stern of the Corfu several stretcher cases were taken oil and each received a cheer from his comrades lean­ing over the decks of the ship. One repatriate was seen carrying his pet duck which he had with him in Thailand and which was it is. under­stood a champion egg layer. The duck Opened and shut its beak excitedly pre­sumably trying to quack in Siamese. After the repatriates had had tea and a chat they left in convoy for the transit camp on Southampton Common. Southampton had done the repatriates proud. The whole of three miles from the docks and along the Avenue were iiccoratcd with streamer Hags and red Far East '~:>?X ',«white and blue bunting. “Much more has "been done said a citizen "than was done on the V Days." The whole route was lined with men. women and children and bal/ies in arms. As the lorries passed slowly along the hands of repatriates were grasped and shaken. It was a triumphal journey— cheering crowds and smiling joking repatriates. The men were soon being looked after by Army Welfare who had everything splendidly laid on. At the Welfare head­quarters there were two Red Cross St.and John Welfare Officers ready to carryout any helpful task Army Welfare needed such as arranging for transport. The Red Cross St.and John arrange­ments which involved many short-notice changes of time were extremely well carried out by the Hampshire Joint Com­mittee. November 1945 Civilian News CAMPS IN BAT A VIA Tl/T. SCH W EIZE R the International -LY1 Red Cross delegate in Singajtore, has reported that Dr. Laupper another delegate returned to Singapore from Batavia on September 31st. While in Batavia Dr. I^aupper con­tacted Dr. Weidman the International Red Cross delegate there and with him. visited two womens and children's camps housing some 1300 inmates and a hospital for old men housing about 600. The general conditions were W - plorable. Apart from deficiency diseases and dysentery the women were suffering from nervous trouble and the children were mostly undernourished. As immediate repatriation was im­possible the local authorities were endeavouring to find suitable accommo­dation outside the camps but this was extremely difficult. Medical and food supplies for the camps are being handled by the local authorities but supplies of recreational articles and comforts for women and children are urgently needed. JAVA AND SUMATRA Proposed Relief Supplies M. Schweizer and Dr. Laupper are endeavouring to secure free relief sup­plies for Java and Sumatra. They are approaching the British Australian and Indian Red Cross representatives in Singapore. The American Y.M .C.A. are sending a representative and supplies to Batavia as soon as possible.S .B.All British civilians in the Netherlands Ectft Indies u'hn ik sired repatriation are noic under-itooJ to have been evacuated. BORNEO Execution of Dr. V isch er Dr. Vischer who was the proposed delegate for the International Red Cross in Borneo was executed with his wife, on December 20th. 1943/ by the Japanese. M. Schweizer states that all reports from Java confirm that many Swiss citizens in the Netherlands East Indies experienced great persecution and oppression under tlie Japanese.S HANG H A I W eihsien Civil Assembly enC tres Latest reports from the British Em­bassy in Chungking indicate that the Weihsicn Civil Assembly Centre had been completely evacuated by October 23rd. Some 600 British internees were flown to their homes in Northern China by the American military authorities rail com­munication having been cut. Those being repatriated were moved down by sea from Tsingrao to Shanghai. LATEST NEWS.— As we togo press it is learned that the internment camp at Singapore has been cleared of United Kingdom internees and only a few are still left in Hong Kong. Internees from Borneo are in process of being evacuated. BUCKINGHAM PALACE The Queen and Ibid you avery wara welcome home* Through all the great trials and sufferings which you have undergone at the hands of the Japanese you and your comrades have been inconstantly our thoughts. V /e know from the accounts w e have already received how heavy those sufferings have been. ?e know also that these have been endured by you with the highest courage. W e mourn with you the deaths of so many of your gallant comrades. ?/ith all our hearts w e hope that your return from captivity will bring you and your families a full measure of happiness which you may long enjoy together. September 1945.
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