Ukrainian minister vows to protect Jews’ rights


KIEV, Ukraine (JTA) — A newly appointed Ukrainian minister vowed to stop xenophobia and interethnic hatred in his country, and to protect the rights of Jews there.

Dr. Yuriy Reshetnikov, the new chairman of the Ukrainian State Committee for Nationalities and Religions, told a news conference Wednesday in Kiev that his committee will use all possible instruments to combat or prevent xenophobia and interethnic hatred.

Reshetnikov talked about intensifying the activities of an interdepartmental council of experts, including scientists, as well as political and other public figures, in the effort.

He spoke about the importance of improving relations with international organizations to protect the rights and cultures of ethnic minorities in Ukraine. Reshetnikov promised to do his best to protect the rights of ethnic minorities, especially Jews.

“We do not see systematic manifestations of anti-Semitism," he said, "but we’ll do all the best to prevent xenophobia, racism and anti-Semitism. We shall teach children tolerance through educational programs and mass media.”

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