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U.S. Diplomats Accuse Russia Of Undermining Ukraine Peace Plan

By Robert Coalson July 29, 2016 Two top U.S. diplomats working to resolve the conflict in eastern Ukraine have accused Russia of continuing to supply separatist fighters with fuel and weapons and creating a “deteriorating security situation” in the region that is as bad as it was a year ago. Ambassador Daniel Baer, head of […]

This Lithuanian concentration camp is now a wedding venue

KAUNAS, Lithuania (JTA) — In this drab city 55 miles west of Vilnius, there are few heritage sites as mysterious and lovely looking as the Seventh Fort. This 18-acre red-brick bunker complex, which dates to 1882, features massive underground passages that connect its halls and chambers. Above ground, the hilltop fortress is carpeted with lush […]

Holocaust monuments vandalized in Germany, Belarus

(JTA) — Unidentified individuals vandalized three World War II monuments in Germany and another Holocaust memorial in Belarus. All five cases were reported last week. The incident in Belarus was reported by tour guide Tamara Kurdadze on July 8, when she saw someone had doused yellow paint on a statue commemorating the mass murder of Jews at […]

Putin gives green light to new anti-terrorism laws: a blow to freedom

RUSSIA Putin gives green light to new anti-terrorism laws: a blow to freedom Nina Achmatova The recently approved measures referred to as ‘Big Brother’ because they bring Internet and telephone communications under the control of the secret services, which now demand tools to decode encrypted messaging programs. Severe restrictions on religious freedom. Human rights activists […]

How Elie Wiesel inspired the Free Soviet Jewry movement

By Glenn Richter         (JTA) — On my bookshelves there are two rows of volumes on the Soviet Jewry movement. Squeezed in among the tomes is a small, well-worn paperback with pages no longer attached to the spine, “The Jews of Silence” by Elie Wiesel. This slim volume is, however, a bridge. It crossed him and […]

Tunnel used by Jews in Lithuania to escape Nazis uncovered

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A tunnel in Lithuania used by Jewish prisoners to escape the Nazis has been uncovered by an international research team near Vilnius. The Israel Antiquities Authority in a statement Wednesday announced the discovery of the 100-foot-long tunnel at the Ponar Forest massacre site. Ponar prisoners used the tunnel, which was located with […]

Ukraine city names street for Lubavitcher Rebbe Menachem Schneerson

The city of Dnepropetrovsk in eastern Ukraine named a street after Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the last and most prominent Lubavitcher rebbe, who fled the city after Communist agents arrested his father there in the 1930s. Menachem Mendel Schneerson Street was unveiled in Dnepropetrovsk Sunday by its chief rabbi, Shmuel Kaminezki, who is one of the Chabad movement’s most senior […]

Lviv Ghetto memorial vandalized in anti-Semitic attack

A monument to the victims of the Holocaust-era ghetto of Lviv in western Ukraine was vandalized in what police suspect is an anti-Semitic incident. Unidentified vandals on Friday threw several gallons of green paint on the memorial, which was erected in 1992 in memory of tens of thousands of Jews who were kept in the ghetto after […]

Lithuania lifts major obstruction to citizenship applications by Jews

(JTA) — Lithuania’s parliament passed legislation that is expected to simplify the naturalization of Litvak Jews abroad and their descendants. Under amendments passed Thursday by the Seimas in Vilnius, Lithuanians who left before 1990 and their direct descendants may be naturalized without renouncing their other nationalities. The legislation passed with 96 its 141 lawmakers voting […]

Lithuanian mayor dismantles building made from Jewish headstones

The municipality of Vilnius in Lithuania began dismantling a Soviet-era structure made from Jewish headstones. Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius removed the first stone from the structure housing an electricity and heating generator on Olandų Street Wednesday, the mayor‘s office said in a statement. The generator was built by the Soviet authorities of Lithuania between 1965-1968, when it […]