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  • Around the Jewish World: Jews in Romania, Hungary Cooperate on Development

    A breakthrough in cross-border Jewish cooperation recently took place when a high-level Jewish delegation from Romania visited Hungary to take part in a study program on Jewish community development. Representatives of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, which organized the weeklong pre-High Holiday trip, called the meetings in Budapest “historic” because it was the first… More ▸

  • Romania, Jewish Groups Sign Agreement on Compensation

    Romania has formally agreed to take specific steps toward compensation for Jewish property seized during World War II, said Elan Steinberg, executive director of the World Jewish Congress. The agreement was signed last week by the Romanian government, the World Jewish Restitution Organization and the Federation of Romanian Jewish Communities, he said. “It’s a significant… More ▸

  • Romania’s Ex-chief Rabbi Stirs Up Controversy in Senate Talk

    A recent speech by a former chief rabbi of Romania has revived a controversy over that country’s role in the Holocaust. The controversy has stretched all the way to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, where officials criticized the conciliatory remarks made by Alexandre Safran in a speech before the Romanian Senate. Safran, 84, now the… More ▸

  • Alfred Moses’ Appointment As Envoy to Romania Angers Handful of Officials

    Alfred Moses, president of the American Jewish Committee and a longtime advocate on behalf of Romanian Jewry, has been appointed U.S. ambassador to Romania. The appointment, which was unanimously confirmed last week by the U.S. Senate, has riled some emotions in Romania, where seven Romanian parliamentarians have charged that Moses was a supporter of the… More ▸

  • Jewish Leaders Join U.S. Officials to Bid Romania to Quash Anti-semitism

    Jewish leaders joined the Clinton administration and members of Congress on the diplomatic road this week, urging the Romanian government to quell the surge of anti-Semitic activity in Romania. B’nai B’rith leaders met with Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu last Thursday at the State Department to express their outrage at the recent dedications of statues… More ▸

  • New Statue of Nazi Collaborator Sparks Concern for Romania’s Jews

    A memorial to a Romanian Nazi collaborator has been erected near Bucharest to the dismay of Jewish groups, who fear the emergence of a wave of anti-Semitism in Romania. At least one statue of wartime despot Ion Antonescu has been seen near the capital in recent weeks. During Antonescu’s dictatorial rule, from 1940 to 1944,… More ▸

  • Family Treasures Hidden from Nazis Unearthed in Romania, Loaned to Rebbe

    A treasure trove of Jewish ritual objects and family heirlooms, buried for safety during the Holocaust, was restored, briefly, to its rightful owner this week. Rabbi Yekutiel Yehuda Halberstam, 90, the Hasidic rebbe of Klausenberg (Cluj), Romania, who now lives in Israel, was able to touch the Torah crowns, candlesticks and inscribed cutlery that were… More ▸

  • Romania’s Chief Rabbi Seeks U.S. Aid, Warns of Danger to Jewish Community

    Romania’s chief rabbi, Moses Rosen, warned Americans last week that unless the United States helps Romania economically, there is no chance that democracy will emerge in the former communist country. “Hungry people going to the ballot are dangerous people,” said Rosen, and democracy cannot survive if the people are hungry, Rosen said in a talk… More ▸

  • Holocaust Commemorations Get Unwelcome Reception in Romania

    Romanian Jews are beginning to feel their non-Jewish countrymen would like them to end public commemorations of Holocaust-related events. Two such occasions this year received sparse media coverage and, where notice was take, the reaction was ambiguous if not outright cynical. In July, the Federation of Romanian Jewish Communities, marking the 50th anniversary of the… More ▸