New York (Oct. 23)
The Polish Government will return Jewish commucal property to reconstituted Jewish communities, but intends to retain under government administration all property belonging to murdered Jews who left no relatives to clain it, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency was told today by Minister Jozef Olszewski, director of the political department of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Warsaw, who is in this country together with Polish Foreign Minister Wincenty Rzymowski.
The Polish diplomat emphasized that no decision has been reached by the Warsaw Government with regard to communal property belonging to Jewish communities which will not be revived. He declared that this property, as well as the unclaimed property of individual Jews in Poland, will not be utilized for the economic rehabilitation of the surviving Jews.
“The Jews in Poland are considered equal citizens with equal rights,” he explained. “They don’t constitute a separate economic unit. They are a part of the general economic structure of the country. No special economic considerations can, therefore, be given them.”
JUDICIAL RIGHTS OF JEWISH COMMUNITIES DEPENDENT ON CONCORDAT WITH POPE
Asked whether Jews in Poland will be able to organize their religious communities on a judicial basis with the right to tax the members of the communities for special Jewish cultural and religious needs, as was the case before the war, Mr. Olszewski declared that this depends upon whether Poland renews the Concordat with the Vatican.
“There is freedom of religion in Poland,” he said, “but the Church is now seperated from the State. If the Concordat is renewed with the Catholic Church, then all the other religions will get the right to organize themselves on a judicial basis.”
The Minister emphasized that anyone who wishes to emigrate from Poland to any country will be allowed to do so, providing the emigrant secures an entrance visa for the country of his destination.
Polish currency will soon be stabilized so as to enable the inhabitants of Poland to get the full value of the foreign currency which may be sent to them by relatives abroad, he stated, adding that relief parcels sent from abroad to Jews and others in Poland are exempt from duty.
REPATRIATION OF POLISH JEWS FROM USSR MAY BE INTERRUPTED DURING WINTER
Discussing repatriation of Polish Jews from Russia, Mr. Olszewski said that the repatriation is being conducted on a territorial basis. At present Jews and other Polish citizens are being repatriated from the Ukraine and Byelorussia. Repatriation from other sections of the USSR will follow, though not before Spring, since it is difficult to conduct repatriation in the winter months, he stated.
Asked why the indictment of the 24 top Nazis by the Allied War Crimes Tribunal, while specifically citing places in other countries where mass-executions of Jews by the Nazis took place, does not contain any mention of such places in Poland, and does not even cite the mass-extermination of the Jews in the ghettos of Warsaw and other Polish towns, the Minister replied that the document was composed and edited by the “Big Four” in which Poland is not included. “The Polish Government,” he said, “is definitely dissatisfied with the fact that the Nazi crimes in Poland-were not sufficiently emphasized in the indictment.”