Mar 2005 Journal

previous article:A doomed love affair (review)

Central Office for Holocaust Claims

Israeli bank account list

Under the terms of the report of the Parliamentary Inquiry Committee for the Location and Restitution of Assets of Holocaust Victims, Israeli banks will have to pay NIS 41.2 million (approximately £5.25 million) and the Israeli government NIS 100.8 million (approximately £12.5 million) in compensation to the owners of dormant bank accounts.

The balances were held in banks under the British Mandate Custodian of Enemy Property, which was established following the introduction of the Enemy Property Act (1939). The legislation was designed to prevent access to assets held by citizens of countries at war with Britain. Following the creation of the state of Israel in 1948 the Custodian was superseded by an Israeli agency with responsibility for enemy property.

An investigation found that 2,276 bank accounts, probably belonging to Holocaust victims, were transferred to the British Mandate Custodian of Enemy Property and later forwarded to the Israeli government.

The advisory committee's report also alleges that the Custodian General did not pay proper interest on accounts transferred to them but accepts Bank Leumi's main claim that it no longer holds any accounts of Holocaust victims.

The list of unpaid assets as well as the Parliamentary Inquiry Committee's report can be found at

Austrian life certificates signing

The AJR continues to be available to notarise the Lebensbescheinigungen (life certificates) for Austrian pensioners. Please note that an item of official identification, such as a passport or driving licence, must be presented when asking an AJR representative to legalise a certificate.

Further help

Written enquiries should be sent to Central Office for Holocaust Claims (UK), Jubilee House, Merrion Avenue, Stanmore, Middx HA7 4RL, by fax to 020 8385 3075, or by email to Assistance can be provided strictly by appointment at the Holocaust Survivors Centre in Hendon, north London. For an appointment, please ring 020 8385 3074.
Michael Newman

previous article:A doomed love affair (review)