Dundee and District Union of Jute and Flax Workers.
Affiliated with the General Federation of Trade Unions; The British and Scottish Trades Union Congresses; and The Scottish Council of Textile Trades Unions.
J.F. SIME, Secretary.
DUNDEE, 22nd September, 1936.
Telephone No. 5273
Sir Walter Citrine, Secretary,
British Trade Union Congress, Smith Square, LONDON, S.W.1.
I am writing on behalf of one of my closest friends, Mr J. I. Villa, Thistle Cottage, Fairmuir, Dundee. Mr Villa is a Spaniard and is Spanish Vice-Consul at Dundee.
Mr Villa's Mother, Sister and Brother-in-Law, Mr Carlos Langa, a prominent barrister in Bilbao, are all resident there. Mr Villa, in view of the state of affairs in the Bilbao area, is very anxious that they should be able to get out of the country. His Mother is 75 years of age.
Unfortunately, his Brother-in-Law was arrested a fortnight ago for no other reason than that he, in personal conversation, criticised the Policy of the Spanish Government in dealing with the situation, as many others have been arrested for the same reason, although Mr Langa is a Republican and therefore against the Rebels.
You will appreciate the natural anxiety of Mr Villa in these difficult circumstances and he is firmly convinced that representations by the British Government suggesting that favourable consideration might be given to granting permission and facilities to those members of his family to leave Spain will bring about the desired object.
For your information enclosed find copy of letter sent by Mr Villa to the British Foreign Secretary.
I have interviewed, along with Mr Villa, Mr Dingle Foot, M.P. for Dundee and Mr Hunter, M.P. for Perth. Both have already written to the Foreign Secretary. Miss Florence Horsburgh M.P. has been written also.
I observe from to-night's paper that an ultimatum has been given to Bilbao to surrender by Friday first. This may or may not be true. If true, it makes the position of Mr Villa's relatives very critical. If Bilbao falls, it is very problematical if it will be known where the prisoners may be removed to, or what their fate my be. It is becuase of this that I am asking