MOSCOW (Jun. 24)
Russian authorities have refused to renew the Jewish Agency for Israel’s accreditation, claiming that some technical problems remain in the agency’s registration documents.
The Jewish Agency submitted its registration application in May. The agency’s license was suspended in April and its activities were curtailed in several Russian cities.
Russia had promised to renew the accreditation by June 15.
On Monday, the agency’s Moscow office was informed by the Russian Justice Ministry that the agency would have to revise its accreditation form; otherwise, its activities could not be officially resumed.
“We were told that some technical problems must be resolved,” said Aryeh Sadeh, head of the agency’s delegation to the former Soviet Union.
The most significant change requires the agency to include private, local members to comply with new Russian laws, according to sources in Israel.
The agency has agreed to resubmit its application in the coming weeks.
It seems clear that the agency will wait until after the July presidential runoff in an effort to avoid any potential political problems.
The Justice Ministry in Russia has refused to comment on the situation.
(JTA staff writer Cynthia Mann contributed to this report from Jerusalem.)