The Trades Union Congress
The Labour Party
"Save the Basque Children"
To Affiliated Trade Unions, Trades Councils, Constituency and Local Labour Parties, Women's Sections and Leagues of Youth
Once more the General Council of the Trades Union Congress and the National Executive Committee of the Labour Party have to appeal to the sense of comradeship and solidarity of the British Labour Movement. All are appreciative and proud of the splendid response which has been evoked by the previous appeals which have been made.
As you are aware, right from the beginning of the Spanish conflict, constant and steady help has been afforded by our Movement, through the International Solidarity Fund, to our comrades in Spain who are fighting valiantly to resist Fascist despotism. Within recent weeks, Comrade Walter Schevenels, Secretary of the International Federation of Trade Unions, and Comrade Fritz Adler, of the Labour and Socialist International, have been in Spain supervising and controlling this work.
The hospital which has been established by the International Solidarity Fund is in operation at Onteniente, but, unfortunately, the number of beds with which we had hoped it would be equipped, has had to be reduced because of our lack of financial resources. None the less, it is a proud achievement to have established and operated a base hospital with approximately 300 beds, staffed and administered by comrades of the International Labour Movement.
For some considerable time, it has been apparent that the necessities of the people in Northern Spain were becoming increasingly urgent. Consignments of food and clothing have been purchased and shipped from England to Santander and Bilbao by our Movement. In pursuance of our policy of trying to ensure the safe arrival of vessels threatened by Franco's warships, we have avoided giving publicity to these activities.
We have considered it inadvisable to make public, through the Press, the fact that consignments were leaving England by particular vessels on a specific date. We have felt it to be no part of our duty to warn Franco and his insurgent fleet in advance of the consignments and the names of the vessels by which they were being despatched.