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6,500 Jews Live Today in Yugoslavia, Community Leader Reports

August 5, 1958
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

A report on the development of Yugoslav Jewry since the end of World War II, written by Dr. Albert Vajs, president of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Yugoslavia, was released here today by the World Jewish Congress. The report establishes that there are only about 6,500 Jews in Yugoslavia.

Dr. Vajs, who is a member of the executive of the World Jewish Congress, describes the change in the overall atmosphere of the community. “From a traditional religious community, the Jewish community in Yugoslavia has grown into a progressive national minority group, which renewed its Jewish life after liberation from fascist rule, and, with the assistance of the Yugoslav authorities and the support of large sections of the public, in free and voluntary cooperation with the Jewish institutions and organizations in other countries, has achieved significant results in the field of social and cultural activity.”

Dr. Vajs claims that the Yugoslav Jews, “judged by their vitality, rank among the most positive Jewish communities in the present day Europe, though numerically among the smallest. ” Israel’s pivotal role in developing Jewish culture and strengthening the bonds linking Jewish communities throughout the world, is emphasized by Dr. Vajs, Despite differences between the various communities, they regard “the State of Israel as the strongest pivot for the preservation of Jewish cultural values and a guarantee of further development, ” the Yugoslav leader declared.

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