Geneva (Aug. 26)
(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
The National Minorities Congress was opened here yesterday under the presidency of Dr. William. A great number of prominent press and press representatives and Mr. Colban, director of the National Minorities Department of the League if Nations, were present.
In his opening address, Dr. Wilfan described the purposes of the Congress and of the national minorities movement. “The national minorities do not rant assimilation, nor do they desire to disappear. What we want is loyal cooperation within the states in which we he and an opportunity for the full development of our culture and the protection of our interests,” he said.
Dr. Leo Motzkin, chairman of the Committee of Jewish Delegations, in welcoming the congress on behalf of the nine Jewish delegates representing Jewish minorities in East European countries, declared that the Jews, being the eldest of the minorities, bring to the consideration of the national minorities question a complete understanding of the problem.
“We expect of this congress an understanding among the minorities themselves in the sense of the higher ideal of justice and the paving of the way for the solution of the problem,” Dr. Motzkin stated. “Not through absorption but through development of their characteristics, do the minorities want to give the world a code of morals on the relations between peoples. Nationalism is good only when it displays an understanding of other nations,” he said.
The congress unanimously accepted a resolution introduced by Dr. Robinson and seconded by Dr. Motzkin formulating the demand for cultural autonomy for the national minorities.
The commission on culture appointed by the congress meets under the chairmanship of Dr. Motzkin. Dr. Robinson is chairman of the judicial commission.