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Sep 2011 Journal

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Nuremberg library restitution

The Nuremberg Municipal Library is searching for the previous owners, respectively the legal successors, of books in their collection, the so-called ‘Sammlung IKG’ (previously the ‘Streicher-Library’).

This collection is a permanent loan of the Jewish Community of Nuremberg to the City of Nuremberg, which states that it has been able to restitute quite a number of books to the families of their previous owners in different parts of the world.

The Library has now compiled, and published on its homepage, an additional search list naming 390 persons from 107 towns in former German-speaking parts of Europe. In its holdings are 2,154 books whose previous owners are known. Further search lists will be published in the near future.

The search list is available at www.stadtbibliothek.nuernberg.de/spezialbibliothek/sammlung_ikg.html

Lithuanian property compensation

Lithuania’s parliament, the Seimas, has announced it will pay US$ 52 million over ten years in compensation for private property confiscated from Jews during the Nazi occupation as a demonstration of goodwill and ‘understanding of the tragedy the Jewish community suffered during the Holocaust’.

The properties in question are currently in the hands of the Lithuanian government, which intends to begin paying into a special compensation fund next year. Part of the funds will be used to restore Jewish heritage sites, while an additional $1.25 m will be paid next year directly to Holocaust survivors.

Reacting to the announcement, the World Jewish Restitution Organisation said: ‘While the amount which will be paid over the next decade represents only a small fraction of the value of the communal and religious property which was owned by the Jewish community prior to World War II, the passage of the law is historic, reflecting the Lithuanian government’s recognition of its moral obligation to return or provide compensation for stolen Jewish property.’

Michael Newman

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