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Delay in Restoration of Property Paralyzes Jewish Life in Czechoslovakia

Until such time as the Czech Government is able to restore confiscated Jewish property to its rightful owners, many of the Jews in Czechoslovakia will continue to be dependent for support on American Jews, through the Joint Distribution Committee, Dr. Imrich Rosenberg, Czech Government official and leader of the 42,000 surviving Jews of Czechoslovakia, declared today at a press conference arranged by the United Jewish Appeal.

Dr. Rosenberg, who arrived in this country from Prague yesterday, came here at the invitation of American Jewish leaders to participate in the $100,000,000 drive of the United Jewish Appeal. He pointed out that the delay in restoring confiscated Jewish property had paralyzed economically the surviving Czech Jews who returned to their homes from concentration and labor camps without means and broken in health. He revealed that he was expecting within the next few days a statement from Jan Masary Czech Foreign Secretary, regarding the full restitution of confiscated Jewish property.

At the same time, Dr. Rosenberg emphasized that the Czechoslovakian Government “has done more to repatriate Jews from Nazi camps in Germany and Austria and to curb anti-Semitism than any of the other governments of Europe.” He added, however, that “the seeds of anti-Semitism planted by the Nazis in Czechoslovakia were too deep to be uprooted overnight.”

Dr. Rosenberg, who is a member of the cabinet of the Secretary of Foreign Trade of the Czech Government, reported that anti-Jewish manifestations were particularly evident in Slovakia, citing the fact that representatives of Slovakian Jewry informed the Anglo-American Inquiry Committee on Palestine, which recently visited Czechoslovakia, that more than 60 percent of the surviving Jews of Slovakia want to leave the country as soon as possible. The great majority of these Jews, Dr. Rosenberg said, want to go to Palestine, while those with relatives in this country would like to come to the United States.

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