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Jews in France Hold First National Conference Since Liberation; Discuss Relief Needs

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The first national conference of Jews in France since its liberation opened here today with 150 delegates representing twenty-six regional committees of the General Committee for Defense and Aid to Jews.

The conference, after reviewing the work of Jewish defense and relief under the occupation and since the liberation of the country, will study the present plight of the Jews in France and will seek to work out a concerted program for rehabilitation and reconstruction.

In the regional reports which were read at today’s session there were numerous references and tributes to the kindness and sympathy displayed by Jewish soldiers of the American and other Allied armies. Reviewing the activities of the organization since its inception in 1943, Secretary General Adamitz announced that the committee had sent a memorandum to the Council of National Resistance describing the Jewish role in the resistance movement and requesting formal affiliation. The committee, he said, is also gathering material on the persecution of Jews during the period of German occupation, in order to publish a record of Jewish martyrdom.

Reviewing the present situation, Adamitz told the conference. “The Jews who remain in France saved their lives, but are ruined.” He reported that 30,000 Jews are registered with the committee for relief. The Jewish masses are not only impoverished, he said, but are homeless, since they are unable to repossess their former homes. He urged the French Government to consider this fact.

The speaker described the special service established by the committee to help Jews find homes and recover their property. He warned of the continued need to fight anti-Semitism and charged that fifth-column elements are seeking to block the restoration of Jewish rights. The fate of the Jews in France is bound up with the fate of democracy here, he said and appealed to the Jews to make the utmost contribution to a speedy victory.

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