Lithuanian Jews defend cooperation with institution accused of anti-Semitism

The Jewish Community of Lithuania defended its decision to cooperate during Holocaust commemorations with a state-funded institution that is accused of hosting anti-Semitic exhibitions. The defense came in a statement posted Monday on the community’s website in response to a letter that Efraim Zuroff, the director of the Israel office of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, […]

Ukraine rebel leader uses anti-Semitic slur to describe country’s leaders

(JTA) — The leader of Ukraine’s pro-Russian rebels used an anti-Semitic insult to describe the country’s political leaders. Alexander Zakharchenko, leader of the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic, during a news conference on Monday called the country’s leaders “miserable representatives of the great Jewish people.” “I can’t remember a time when Cossacks were led by people […]

Separatist leader says ‘miserable Jews’ running Ukraine

Ukraine is run by “miserable Jews,” one of the leaders of the Russian-backed insurgency roiling the former Soviet republic told a press conference on Tuesday.Ukrainian nationalist figures of previous generations would roll over in their graves if they could see the current leadership in Kiev, said Alexander Zakharchenko, president of the breakaway Donetsk People’s Republic.“Petro […]

Ukrainian Jews look to evacuate city as Jewish woman reportedly killed by shelling

Jewish leaders in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol are urging their constituents to flee as casualties mount amid shelling by Russian- backed separatists. One member of the Jewish community has been killed by the shelling, Aaron Kaganovsky, the assistant to city Rabbi Mendel Cohen, told “There’s turmoil in the community, but we continue […]

Kiev to appoint special envoy to combat anti-Semitism

The announcement came days after representatives of the European Jewish Congress urged the EU to create just such an office. Ukraine will soon appoint an envoy tasked with preventing and combating anti-Semitism and xenophobia. Last week’s announcement came days before the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp by the Red Army […]

Ukrainian Jewish businessman found shot dead

(JTA) — A Ukrainian Jewish businessman was shot dead in Lviv. The body of Felix Vrotslavsky, 56, was found Tuesday on Zelenoy Street, on the city’s southeastern edge. The murder was first reported by the news site, citing an unnamed police source. A witness told police that Vrotslavsky’s body was thrown out of a […]

Jews Struggling to Survive as Fighting Intensifies in Eastern Ukraine

In eastern Ukraine, Jews are scrambling to survive as fighting intensifies between Russian-backed rebels and the Ukraine army. At least nine people were killed this morning (Jan. 22) when a civilian bus was shelled in the city of Donetsk, capital of the province bearing the same name. The Ukraine defense ministry told the BBCthat its […]

UNESCO Holocaust exhibition nixed following Latvian protests

Riga officials said to object on grounds exposition on children in the Salaspils concentration camp would damage their country’s image Latvian officials prevented the opening of an exhibition about the Holocaust that Russia wanted to host at a United Nations building. The exposition, titled “Stolen childhood: Holocaust victims Seen by Child Inmates of Salaspils Nazi […]

Russia: Government against Rights Groups

In 2012 Russia’s parliament adopted a law that required nongovernmental organizations (NGO)s to register as “foreign agents” with the Ministry of Justice if they engage in “political activity” and receive foreign funding. The definition of “political activity” under the law is so broad and vague that it can extend to all aspects of advocacy and human rights work. […]

Kyiv Making Gains in Religious Dimension of the Ukrainian-Russian Conflict

Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to use religion to advance an expansionist agenda. But an increasing number of believers in Ukraine appear to be rejecting the notion that Putin and the Russian Orthodox Church are the defenders of the true faith. Religion became a battleground in Ukraine long before the Euromaidan movement gained power […]