Vienna reopens Jewish sports club

A Jewish sports club in Austria confiscated by the Nazis 70 years ago reopened in Vienna.

Hakoah reopened Tuesday in Prater Park on the site of its former headquarters.

The Karl Haber Sport and Leisure Centre features a jogging track, tennis courts, swimming pool, solarium, fitness room, cafe, restaurant and child-care facilities. Haber was a Hakoah member who sought to have the club’s property returned to the Jewish community after World War II.

The city of Vienna and the Austrian government covered the $11.5 million cost of the new building.

The reopening took place on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the Anschluss, Nazi Germany’s annexation of Austria, which was mostly welcomed by Austrians.

Some 180,000 Jews lived in Vienna before World War II, when Hakoah was the city’s biggest sports club. Approximately 10,000 Jews, many from central Asia, now live in the Austrian capital.

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