Israel’s decision to send emissaries to Germany to encourage aliyah was made without the knowledge of Germany’s main Jewish group.
This week’s decision to send the two emissaries from the Nativ program to Germany in September was made over the objections of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. The emissaries will be charged with reaching out to Russian-speaking Jewish emigres living in Germany and encouraging them to move to Israel.
During tense negotiations recently, German Jewish leaders told Israel that any activity in Germany by Nativ, a government-funded aliyah-education organization, must be coordinated with the Central Council and the Jewish Agency for Israel, which already is active in the country.
Stephan Kramer, secretary general of the Central Council, had said he would petition the German government to block Nativ’s operation in the country if Israel was determined to dispatch an organization to Germany that Kramer says competes with existing communal structures. German Jewish leaders have expressed concern that Nativ will raise tensions between Germany’s veteran Jewish population and the Russian-speaking Jewish emigres who have flocked to the country over the past decade and a half.