A delegation of the leadership of the European Jewish Congress has met with German Chancellor Helmut Kohl to seek Germany’s support in combating right-wing extremism, xenophobia and anti-Semitism in Europe.
The EJCongress sought to speak with Kohl because Germany will assume the rotating presidency of the European Union in July.
Among those attending Monday’s 90-minute meeting in Bonn were EJC President Jean Kahn, Vice President Ignatz Bubis, Secretary-General Scrge Cwajgenbaum and Judge Israel Finestein, chairman of the British Board of Jewish Deputies.
Also in attendance was Israel Singer, secretary-general of the World Jewish Congress.
The delegation discussed a proposal for the E.U. membership to work toward creating anti-racist laws that will apply to all member states.
The EJC delegation also spoke of its concerns about the inclusion of neo-fascists into the currently forming Italian government for the first time since the end of World War II.
The recent wave of hate incidents and attacks against foreigners and Jewish sites in Germany was also discussed, as was the question of the expected inclusion of Austria in the E.U.
Austria has been accepted for membership by the European body but awaits ratification by its own people, who will decide in a June referendum.
The EJCongress delegation wants assurances from the Austrian government that it is willing to confront its Nazi past before it becomes a member of the E.U.
The meeting also focused on the Berlin Document Center, an archive of some 25 million Nazi Party documents which the United States is planning to hand over to Germany when the U.S. Army completes its pullout from Germany later this year.
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