Vichy Dissolves Jewish Organizations in France; Central Body Projected

The dissolution of all existing Jewish cultural and relief organizations in both occupied and unoccupied France, and the establishment of a Central Union of Jews of France, modeled after the Reichsvereinigung of the Jews of Germany, to conduct its activities under the direct control of the Commissariat for Jewish Affairs, is suggested in the draft of a law submitted for approval to Marshal Petain, it was reliably learned here today.

The draft of this new law, which in its details is even harsher than the law governing the Reichsvereinigung in Germany, provides:

1. All Jews must pay taxes to the Central Union, membership in which is compulsory for all Jews residing in France.

2. The administrative council of the Union is to be composed of 18 members all of whom are to be nominated by Xavier Vallat, Commissar for Jewish Affairs. Each of these members is to be directly responsible solely to Vallat, who will have the power to veto any of their decisions.

3. All existing Jewish relief organizations are to be dissolved and their property handed over to the Union under conditions to be fixed by the Ministry of Interior. The Commissar for Jewish Affairs and two controllers designated by the Ministry of Economics and Finance are to have financial control over the funds of the Union, contributed by French Jewry for relief and other communal purposes.

4. In addition to these funds, the Union is to have an income from direct taxation to be levied upon its members in proportion to their fortunes. The rate of the tax is to be fixed by the Administrative Council of the Union with the approval of the Commissar for Jewish Affairs.

Explaining that the purpose of the establishment of the Central Union is “to assure representation of Jews in France before the public authorities, particularly regarding questions concerning relief, social work and retraining,” the draft of the new law contains provisions as to how the law will operate in the occupied and the unoccupied sections of France.

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