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Germany Authorizes Israel Residents to File Restitution Claims

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A ruling issued here by the Federal Government to implement the recently-enacted Federal Restitution Law places Israel claimants on the same footing as residents of countries maintaining full diplomatic relations with West Germany.

The $360, 000, 000 Federal Restitution Law, which entered into force two months ago, provides compensation for identifiable Jewish property sequestered by the former German Reich during the Nazi period in either West Germany or Berlin. To exclude applicants who live in East Germany and in the East European satellites of the USSR, the law contains a proviso stipulating that claims will be entertained only from residents of states with which the Federal Republic has entered into diplomatic relations, or to whom it has specifically accorded equivalent status for this purpose.

Since formal diplomatic relations between Israel and West Germany have not yet come into being, inhabitants of the Jewish State were not entitled to receive payments due them under the Federal Restitution Law. According to the new ruling, residents of Israel will henceforth be treated on a par with Nazi victims who make their homes in other parts of the Western world.

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