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Individual Jews in Germany Receive Reimbursement for Property

Individual Jews who failed to file claims for restitution with the West German states prior to expiration of the deadline for filing such claims in the United States zone of Germany have been reimbursed or are in the process of being reimbursed for some $5,000,000 worth of property, it was reported at a conference of the Jewish Restitution Successor Organization held at Berchtesgaden, once the site of Hitler’s home.

After the deadline expired, the J.R.S.O. established a board to handle claims by individuals and when the J.R.S.O. recovered the property or received payment for it, the property or proceeds were turned over to the individuals concerned.

Dr. Benjamin B. Ferencz, director general of the organization, reported that it had turned over to the Jewish Agency some $8,000,000, or two-thirds of all the proceeds it has obtained from German states for Jewish heirless and communal property since the inception of the J.R.S.O. The remainder of these funds have been turned over to the Joint Distribution Committee for relief and welfare assistance to Jews in and out of Germany. Dr. Ferencz said that the organization would recover some further property because some of its major claims in Berlin still remain to be settled.

The J.R.S.O. chief pointed out that his organization arrived on the German scene to insure successful completion of the restitution program and that it would not leave until this task had been accomplished. He stressed that implementation of the Federal legislation for restitution agreed to in the reparations pact would need to be watched by an effective Jewish organization. He also said that Jewish groups throughout the world would have to explain to individual victims of the Nazis their rights under the Federal laws and would have to help them file their claims and secure prompt payment.

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