Ukrainian government returns Torah scroll


KIEV, Ukraine (JTA) — The state archive of Ukraine’s Nikolayev region returned a Torah scroll to the local Jewish community.

It is the 24th Torah scroll that has been returned to the community from the state archive, one of six archival institutions in Ukraine where Torah scrolls are stored. The scroll was returned Wednesday. A 25th badly damaged Torah scroll remains in the archive.

The scrolls have been examined by an expert who has determined that only four of them can be restored.

Rabbi Shlomo Gottlieb, the chief rabbi of the Nikolayev region, thanked the Ukrainian government for its understanding of the importance of the Torah scrolls to the Jewish community.

Ukraine’s rabbis insist that all Torah scrolls and fragments being held by the Ukrainian State Archives must be returned to their Jewish communities. President Viktor Yuschenko last year issued a decree ordering the restoration of Jewish religious objects to Ukraine’s Jewish communities.

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