Press Releases

WJRO: PASSAGE OF LOOTED ART LEGISLATION IN FRANCE IS AN IMPORTANT STEP IN THE RESTITUTION OF WORKS PLUNDERED DURING THE HOLOCAUST

(New York, NY)  February 15, 2021:  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the passage of looted art legislation in France as an important step in the restitution of works plundered during the Holocaust.  The law authorizes public museums holding the works to hand over the property to the heirs of the original owners. Fifteen […]

WJRO WELCOMES PASSAGE OF HOLOCAUST ERA RESTITUTION LEGISLATION IN LATVIA

Law to provide €40 Million to revitalize Latvian Jewish Community, Holocaust memorialization, remembrance, education, and social services (New York, NY) February 10, 2022: Today, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the passage of a new restitution law by the Latvian parliament, which is the result of efforts led by WJRO and the local Latvian […]

WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) LAUNCHES THIRD ANNUAL SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN – #MyPropertyStory: Speak About Justice – BEHIND EVERY PROPERTY THERE IS A STORY

Campaign expands to TikTok, where Holocaust survivors and youth speak about seeking justice for the unprecedented theft of property from Jewish people and communities during the Shoah and its aftermath To coincide with International Holocaust Remembrance Day (IHRD) today, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) launched the third annual social media campaign, #MyPropertyStory: Speak About […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION WELCOMES HISTORIC UN RESOLUTION REJECTING AND CONDEMNING HOLOCAUST DENIAL

On the 80th anniversary of the Wannsee Conference, United Nations General Assembly approves International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of Holocaust denial and distortion   (New York, NY)  January  20, 2022: Today, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the passage of a historic resolution by the United Nations General Assembly (A/76/L.30) which “Rejects […]

HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS TO RECEIVE EUR 5,000 EACH IN FIRST INSTALLMENT PAYMENT AS PART OF HISTORIC LUXEMBOURG AGREEMENT ON HOLOCAUST ERA RESTITUTION

Luxembourg Direct Support Payment Program still accepting applications New deadline – January 31, 2022 The World Jewish Organization (WJRO) is pleased to announce  that the Claims Conference has begun to distribute EUR 1,000,000 from the Luxembourg Fund allocated for this purpose to Holocaust survivors who are currently living in or were persecuted in the Grand […]

WJRO STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF DR. AUREL VAINER, LONGTIME HEAD OF THE JEWISH FEDERATION IN ROMANIA

The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) mourns the passing of Dr. Aurel Vainer, longtime head of the Jewish Federation in Romania. Gideon Taylor, WJRO Chair of Operations and Mark Weitzman, WJRO Chief Operating Officer, issued the following statement: “With the death of Dr. Aurel Vainer, longtime head of the Jewish Federation in Romania, the world […]

DEADLINE FOR LUXEMBOURG DIRECT PAYMENT PROGRAM EXTENDED

New Deadline – January 31, 2022 WJRO is pleased to announce that the deadline for the Luxembourg direct support payment program has been extended to January 31, 2022, to ensure that Holocaust survivors have sufficient time to apply for the program. Approved applicants who submitted their application by October 15, 2021 will still receive their […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) WELCOMES THE APPOINTMENT OF ELLEN GERMAIN BY US SECRETARY OF STATE ANTONY BLINKEN TO THE POSITION OF SPECIAL ENVOY FOR HOLOCAUST ISSUES

The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the appointment of Ellen Germain by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the position of Special Envoy for Holocaust Issues. Founded in 1999, the Office of the Special Envoy for Holocaust Issues develops and implements US policy to return Holocaust era assets to their rightful owners, secure […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) NAMES MARK WEITZMAN AS NEW CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) is pleased to announce the appointment of Mark Weitzman as Chief Operating Officer, beginning September 1, 2021. Mr. Weitzman will play a leading role in WJRO’s advocacy and negotiations efforts to recover Jewish properties in Europe, in pursuit of a measure of justice for Holocaust survivors, their families, and […]

AUCTION HOUSE HALTS SALE OF SACRED ARTIFACTS TAKEN ILLEGALLY DURING HOLOCAUST AFTER URGENT INTERNATIONAL REQUESTS

Auction of Sacred Ledger of the Chevra Kadisha of Tomashvar (Timisoara) was scheduled to take place on Wednesday, July 28 in Israel; similar items seized in New York Following international requests, including a letter  sent by the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO), the Genazym auction house agreed to cancel the sale of the sacred Ledger […]

US SENATE URGES POLISH PRESIDENT DUDA TO WITHDRAW BILL THAT WOULD AFFECT COMMUNIST ERA PROPERTY RESTITUTION CLAIMS

Prominent US Senate members express opposition to new bill currently under review in the Polish Senate that would extinguish almost all private property restitution claims in Poland (New York, NY) July 19, 2021: Prominent US Senators signed a bipartisan letter to President Duda, expressing their “grave concerns” about a proposed bill that would make it […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) ANNOUNCES LUXEMBOURG PAYMENT PROGRAM FOR ELIGIBLE HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS

Announcement marks next phase of historic Luxembourg agreement on Holocaust era restitution and provides EUR 1,000,000 to be distributed equally to approved applicants. (New York, NY) July 15, 2021:  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) announces that Holocaust survivors can now apply for the Luxembourg direct support payment program.  The application deadline is October 15, […]

WJRO STRONGLY OBJECTS TO PROPOSED POLISH LAW THAT WOULD EXTINGUISH POSSIBILITY TO RESOLVE HOLOCAUST ERA PROPERTY RESTITUTION CLAIMS

New bill – on the agenda in the Polish Parliament this Wednesday & Thursday – will make it impossible to challenge administrative decisions older than 30 years, including pursuing re-privatization claims in Poland for Jews and non-Jews (New York, NY) June 22, 2021: The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) is calling for the withdrawal of […]

WJRO STATEMENT ON ISAAC HERZOG, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF ISRAEL

(New York, NY) June 2, 2021:  The World Jewish Restitution Organization congratulates Isaac Herzog, Co-Chair of WJRO’s Executive Committee, on his historic election as the next president of the State of Israel. Isaac Herzog will become the 11th president of the State of Israel on July 9, replacing President Reuven Rivlin at the end of […]

US SECRETARY OF STATE BLINKEN TO WJRO & CLAIMS CONFERENCE: “I ASSURE YOU THAT I WILL KEEP HIGH ON MY AGENDA RESOLUTION OF REMAINING HOLOCAUST-ERA PROPERTY RESTITUTION ISSUES, AS WELL AS SUPPORT FOR SURVIVORS AND JEWISH COMMUNITIES DEVASTATED BY THE HOLOCAUST”

 Blinken Pledges to Work with WJRO and Claims Conference to Help Countries Meet Holocaust Property Restitution Commitments New York, NY (March 15, 2021) Today, Gideon Taylor, Chair of Operations, World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) and President, the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference), released a letter from US Secretary of State Antony […]

WJRO AND THE CLAIMS CONFERENCE RESPOND TO VERDICT IN DEFAMATION TRIAL OF INTERNATIONALLY KNOWN SCHOLARS IN POLAND

“The telling of history must not be blocked or restricted – this decision damages an open and honest coming to terms with the past,” said Claims Conference President and WJRO Chair of Operations, Gideon Taylor. “Poland must encourage open inquiry into its history, both the positive and the negative aspects, in order to build a […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) SIGNS HISTORIC AGREEMENT WITH LUXEMBOURG ON HOLOCAUST-ERA PROPERTY RESTITUTION

Agreement provides funds to Holocaust survivors; commits dedicated resources for Holocaust memorialization, remembrance, education, and research in Luxembourg; addresses key property issues (Luxembourg) January 27, 2021: Today, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) signed a historic new agreement with the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg on outstanding Holocaust-era property restitution issues. The groundbreaking agreement was signed […]

GIDEON TAYLOR’S REMARKS AT THE SIGNING CEREMONY AGREEMENT WITH LUXEMBOURG ON HOLOCAUST ERA PROPERTY RESTITUTION

 January 27, 2021  Gideon Taylor, Chair of Operations, World Jewish Restitution Organization Distinguished guests, on behalf of the World Jewish Restitution Organization, it is an honor to join together in this historic agreement with the Government of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, through the leadership of Prime Minister Bettel, as well as our partners […]

CLAIMS CONFERENCE AND WJRO ANNOUNCE ONLINE PUBLICATION ON 150 LIBRARY SEIZURE OPERATIONS STOLEN BY THE NAZIS IN BELGIUM

Historic online publication documents wartime private libraries containing more than 250,000 books  (New York, NY ) December 7, 2020:  The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) and the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) announce the publication of “Documenting Nazi Library Plunder in Occupied Belgium and Limited Postwar Retrieval” at https://www.errproject.org/looted_libraries_be.php. “This new […]

DURING THESE DIFFICULT TIMES OF THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC, THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) ANNOUNCES PAYMENTS TO ROMANIAN HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS IN ISRAEL

More than NIS 9 million provided to over 2,100 needy survivors JERUSALEM, October 13, 2020 – During these difficult times of the coronavirus pandemic, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) today announced the distribution of more than NIS 9 million to support over 2,100 needy Romanian Jewish Holocaust survivors in Israel. The funds have been […]

WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) LAUNCHES SECOND ANNUAL SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN – #MyPropertyStory: The Next Generations – BEHIND EVERY PROPERTY THERE IS A STORY

Survivors, children and grandchildren of survivors share stories about lives that were forever changed by the Holocaust to show how homes, land, businesses, or personal possessions are important and powerful links to the past (New York, NY) September 8, 2020: In advance of the Jewish High Holidays, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) today launched […]

HISTORIC INTERNATIONAL VIRTUAL CONFERENCE BRINGS TOGETHER JEWS, CHRISTIANS, POLES, AND POLISH JEWISH DIASPORA TO DISCUSS PROTECTING AND PRESERVING 1,200 JEWISH CEMETERIES IN POLAND

Participants United by Shared Passion to Help and Commemorate the Rich Jewish Heritage of Poland   (New York, NY) August 19, 2020: A groundbreaking international virtual conference, “Restoring Jewish Cemeteries of Poland: The Task Ahead,” yesterday brought together Jewish and non-Jewish leaders, scholars, and activists from the US, Israel, Poland, and throughout Europe to discuss […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) WELCOMES GROUNDBREAKING US GOVERNMENT REPORT ON PROPERTY RESTITUTION

State Department JUST Act report shows that many European countries have not upheld their commitments on Holocaust era property restitution US Secretary of State: “I will continue to prioritize this effort” (New York, NY) July 29, 2020:  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the State Department’s groundbreaking JUST Act report that shows that many […]

BRITISH GOVERNMENT STRONGLY REAFFIRMS SUPPORT FOR HOLOCAUST-ERA PROPERTY RESTITUTION IN POLAND

Assures the House of Lords that “we continue to raise the issue regularly with Poland” (London, England) July 28: Yesterday the British Government strongly reaffirmed its support for Holocaust-era property restitution in Poland and other countries, in reply to a question asked in the House of Lords by Baroness Ruth Deech. Speaking on behalf of […]

Dutch Railways (NS) Seeks to Dictate to Jewish Community Acknowledgement for 102,000 Jews Transported to Their Deaths

  Dutch Railways ignores its own Commission’s Recommendation that NS Consult with Jewish Community on a Collective Expression – Refuses to Include Assistance to Holocaust Survivors Devastated by NS Transports or the Dutch Jewish Community Representatives of Dutch Jewish Community, Holocaust Survivors, and Jewish Organizations Around the World Express Profound Disappointment and Sadness (New York, […]

CLAIMS CONFERENCE AND WJRO WELCOME INTERNATIONAL HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE ALLIANCE (IHRA) DECLARATION HONORING VICTIMS AND SURVIVORS OF THE HOLOCAUST

Ministers, Government Officials, and Heads of International Organizations Gather to Reaffirm Commitment to Combating Holocaust Distortion, Antisemitism, and Discuss Relevant Issues at Conference Held to Mark the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz  (Brussels, Belgium) January 19, 2020:  The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) and the World Jewish Restitution Organization […]

AHEAD OF ROSH HASHANAH, THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) ANNOUNCES PAYMENTS TO ROMANIAN HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS IN ISRAEL

Nearly NIS 16 million provided to almost 2,500 Needy Survivors                                                              JERUSALEM, September 26, 2019 – In advance of Rosh Hashanah, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) today announced the distribution of almost NIS 16 million to support some 2,500 needy Romanian Jewish Holocaust survivors in Israel.  Benefiting from the program are two 103 year- […]

THE WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) WELCOMES THE APPOINTMENT OF CHERRIE DANIELS BY US SECRETARY OF STATE MIKE POMPEO TO THE POSITION OF SPECIAL ENVOY FOR HOLOCAUST ISSUES

(New York, NY) September 13, 2019:  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the appointment of Cherrie Daniels by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to the position of Special Envoy for Holocaust Issues. Founded in 1999, the Office of the Special Envoy for Holocaust Issues develops and implements US policy to return Holocaust-era assets […]

US SENATE URGES SECRETARY OF STATE POMPEO TO “ACT BOLDLY AND WITH URGENCY” TO ENCOURAGE POLAND TO RESTITUTE PROPERTY TO HOLOCAUST VICTIMS

Bipartisan letter signed by 88 Senators including all Senators running for President  New York, NY (August 5, 2019)  Eighty-eight US Senators signed a bipartisan letter led by Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) urging Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to “act boldly and with urgency” to encourage Poland to resolve the issue of […]

DUTCH NATIONAL RAILWAY’S (NS) ANNOUNCEMENT OF APPLICATIONS TO COMPENSATE HOLOCAUST VICTIMS IS AN IMPORTANT STEP

WJRO Encourages Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) to accept the Independent Committee’s Recommendation to Address those Excluded in the Compensation Program including more than a Hundred Thousand who Perished New York, NY (August 1, 2019) The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) acknowledges the Dutch National Railway – Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) – announcement today of the application process […]

Seeking Fairness for Property Claimants/Rzeczpospolita Op-ed May 31, 2019

Debunking Myths about Calls for a Denationalization Law (Translation from Rzeczpospolita Op-ed: May 31, 2019) https://www.rp.pl/Publicystyka/190539927-Szesc-mitow-o-restytucji-mienia-zydowskiego.html By Gideon Taylor, Chair of Operations, World Jewish Restitution Organization Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki’s remarks on May 18 in opposition to property restitution in which he said that “it would be an abuse of all of the basic principles […]

POLISH PRIME MINISTER’S STATEMENT IS DEEPLY INSENSITIVE TO HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS — AND INCORRECT

WJRO Responds to Negative Rhetoric and Public Attacks by the Polish Government about Issue of Property Restitution   (New York, NY) May 20, 2019: At a campaign rally on Saturday, May 18, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said that his country will never pay restitution for Jewish properties stolen during the Holocaust, and that paying […]

FORMER POLISH DIPLOMAT APPOINTED AS DIRECTOR OF POLISH JEWISH HERITAGE ORGANIZATION

(Warsaw, Poland) April 8, 2019:  The Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland (FODZ), a partnership of the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) and the Union of Jewish Communities in Poland, is pleased to announce the appointment of Piotr Puchta to the position of Director. Mr. Puchta will spearhead FODZ’s efforts to recover, […]

WORLD JEWISH RESTITUTION ORGANIZATION (WJRO) LAUNCHES SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN– #MyPropertyStory – BEHIND EVERY PROPERTY THERE IS A STORY

Survivors and their families share stories about their lives before the Holocaust to show how their homes, land, business, or personal possessions are important and powerful links to their pasts   (New York, NY) April 8, 2019: In preparation for Holocaust Memorial Day (Yom HaShoah), the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) is launching a month-long […]

WJRO: Poland’s Prime Minister Morawiecki is wrong. The issue of restitution has not been resolved.

Statement of Gideon Taylor, Chair of Operations, World Jewish Restitution Organization February 17, 2019 We were surprised and disappointed to see Prime Minister Morawiecki’s response on Sunday to Secretary of State Pompeo’s call for Poland “to move forward with comprehensive private property restitution legislation for those who lost property during the Holocaust era.” Prime Minister […]

US Secretary of State Pompeo Calls for Holocaust-Era Property Issue with Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs

Calls for Poland to Endorse Legislation for Property Compensation  (New York, NY) February 13, 2019:  In a joint press conference in Warsaw, in his first official visit to Poland as US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo raised the issue of Holocaust-era property restitution with the Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Professor Jacek Czaputowicz. Secretary of […]

European Union Calls for Property Restitution in Bosnia

For First Time, European Parliament Considers Seized Property in Reviewing Bosnia’s Membership Application (Strasbourg, France) February 13, 2019: The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the adoption of a European Parliament Resolution on the 2018 Commission Report on Bosnia and Herzegovina, in which the EU Parliament calls upon Bosnia and Herzegovina to address property restitution. […]

European Parliament Passes Resolution to Identify and Recover Looted Art

      Resolution Calls for Comprehensive Database for Jewish-Owned Artworks Seized by the Nazis Millions of cultural goods were stolen during WWII including more than 650,000 pieces of art; Over 110,000 art pieces remain missing   (Strasbourg, France) January 17, 2019: The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes passage today by the European Parliament […]

World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) Condemns Vandalization of Cemetery in Poland

Swastikas and ISIS Inscriptions Deface Holocaust Monument (New York, NY) November 20, 2018.  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) condemns the vandalization of the Jewish cemetery in Sochoczew, Poland, which took place over the weekend.  A monument commemorating the Holocaust has been defaced in red paint with swastikas and ISIS inscriptions which read “Death 2 […]

WJRO Statement on the Passing of Romanian Ambassador Mihnea Constantinescu

(Jerusalem) November 19, 2018.  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) mourns the passing of Romanian Ambassador Mihnea Constantinescu.     Gideon Taylor, WJRO Chief of Operations and Colette Avital, WJRO Secretary General issued the following statement: “With the death of Romanian Ambassador Mihnea Constantinescu, the world lost a statesman.  We will remember him as a […]

As Rosh Hashanah Approaches, Holocaust Survivors Receive Payments from Restitution Efforts in Romania: Eldest Recipient Over 100 Years Old

JERUSALEM, September 9, 2018 – Ahead of Rosh Hashanah, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) today announced the distribution of almost NIS 1 million to support some 142 needy Romanian Jewish Holocaust survivors in Israel – including one Holocaust survivor who is 104 years old who lives on her own in Israel and was happy […]

New Fund for Holocaust Survivors from Romania

New York, June 5: The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) today announced the launch of a new fund totaling $1.3 million — the Romanian Survivor Relief Program (RSRP). This program is funded from the restitution of communal properties wrongfully taken from Jewish communities of Romania during and after World War II.  The funds have been […]

WJRO applauds President Trump’s signing of JUST Act for Holocaust restitution

Washington, D.C., May 10, 2018 –The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes President Trump signing The Justice for Uncompensated Survivors Today (JUST) Act into law yesterday. “This is a powerful statement of America’s unwavering commitment to supporting Holocaust survivors in their quest for justice,” said Gideon Taylor, WJRO Chair of Operations. “We thank President Trump […]

Congress unanimously approves law to assist Holocaust survivors

Washington, D.C., April 24, 2018 –The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) applauds the United States Congress for unanimously passing The Justice for Uncompensated Survivors Today (JUST) Act today. “This is a powerful statement of America’s unwavering commitment to supporting Holocaust survivors in their quest for justice,” said Gideon Taylor, WJRO Chair of Operations. “We thank […]

US Senate urges Polish Prime Minister to pass fair restitution legislation

Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) authored the bipartisan letter, which was signed by 59 Senators. March 26 – 59 US Senators sent a bipartisan letter authored by Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) urging Poland to quickly pass restitution legislation that does not discriminate against Jewish Holocaust victims or their […]

WJRO Concerned About Polish Government Decision to Return Property Law to Ministry of Justice; Urges Speedy Passage of Just and Fair Legislation

February 14 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) called on the Government of Poland to move forward quickly with improved legislation to address property confiscations. This came after the Polish Council of Ministers yesterday returned draft legislation to the Ministry of Justice for reconsideration. “We are concerned that this administrative step will delay passage […]

Statement of Gideon Taylor, chair of operations of the World Jewish Restitution Organization and co-chair of The Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland (FODZ) regarding Jewish cemetery in Warsaw

New York, January 25 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization welcomes the Polish government commitment of PLN $100 ($28 million) from the national budget for the restoration and preservation of Okopowa in Warsaw, one of the largest Jewish cemeteries in the world. The measure passed the Sejm overwhelmingly and was signed into law by President […]

‘1945’ to Receive Inaugural WJRO Justice Award, Film Brings Property Restitution Issue to Public Attention, Many Hungarians ‘Confronting Past for the First Time’

New York, Jan. 23, 2018 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization proudly announced that the critically acclaimed film “1945” and its director Ferenc Török will receive the first annual WJRO Justice Award for raising awareness about property confiscated from Jews during the Holocaust and for ensuring that history is not forgotten. The announcement comes as […]

The Hague, Netherlands Restitution Program

The Municipality of Hague has published the following notice: “Are you a Jewish home owner or a surviving relative of a Jewish homeowner in The Hague during the Second World War? Were back taxes for ground rent and street tax imposed on you or a relative for 1942, 1943, 1944 and 1945 or for one of […]

Senate Unanimously Passes Baldwin and Rubio’s Bipartisan Legislation To Support Holocaust Survivors, Families

Washington, Dec. 12, 2017 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) applauded the U.S. Senate for unanimously passing the bipartisan Justice for Uncompensated Survivors Today (JUST) Act (S.447). The WJRO also urged the House Foreign Affairs Committee to mark up the bill this Thursday to help ensure that it is signed into law by the end of […]

World Jewish Restitution Organization “Profoundly Disappointed” at Proposed Polish Property Legislation that would Exclude Vast Majority of Holocaust Survivors and Their Families

Urges Government to Ensure Fair and Just Law October 20 – Over seventy years after 90% of Polish Jewry was killed during the Holocaust, the Polish Government today published proposed legislation that would address property confiscations. The draft legislation as proposed would exclude most Holocaust survivors and their families. On behalf of the World Jewish […]

World Jewish Restitution Organization Welcomes Poland’s Announcement of Need for National Legislation for Confiscated Property; Urges that it be Fair and Just

October 11 – Gideon Taylor, World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) Chair of Operations, made the following statement after the announcement earlier today by Polish Deputy Minister of Justice Mr. Patryk Jaki of planned legislation on confiscated property: “We welcome the recognition today by Poland that national legislation is needed to address the issue of confiscated […]

MEPs from across Europe pledge renewed support for Holocaust survivors over restitution

Calls for Special Envoys for Post-Holocaust Related Issues in 47 states (Monday, 26 June 2017)  European Parliament members from more than 20 EU member states and five European political groups have backed a pledge to increase support for Holocaust survivors and their families seeking the return of stolen and looted WW2 property. Seventy-one MEPs, representing […]

NIS 12 Million to be Distributed to Needy Romanian Survivors in Israel

JERUSALEM, May 9 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) today announced the first distribution of NIS 12 million to support some 2700 needy Holocaust survivors of Romanian origin who reside in Israel. The funds have been made available by the Caritatea Foundation in Romania. In a joint statement, Ambassador Colette Avital, president of the […]

Address by the President of Israel at a Meeting with the World Jewish Restitution Organization

It is an honor to be joined here by Holocaust survivors, as well as representatives of countries around the world who are working together for this important cause – “Justice for Holocaust Survivors”. Friends, let’s be honest. There can be no true justice, in the face of such terrible evil, such inhuman acts. What justice […]

Resolution needed on post-Holocaust restitution in Europe, urges European Parliament President

Hundreds of thousands of Holocaust survivors living in poverty, international conference is told (Wednesday 26 April – Brussels, Belgium) European Parliament President Antonio Tajani today endorsed the return of property and possessions seized from Jewish communities and victims during the Holocaust, saying it was a “fundamental element to restore justice after the Holocaust.” Declaring that […]

International Conference, Members of the European Parliament call for urgency on resolving remaining restitution issues

European Parliament highlights plight of ageing Holocaust survivors Ambassador Joël Lion presses European countries to fulfill obligations to Holocaust survivors ‘for the sake of justice’ Human Rights Ambassador François Croquette says European countries have a ‘moral imperative’ to return Holocaust-era property US Special Envoy Thomas K. Yazdgerdi appeals for justice for survivors and their families […]

WJRO Welcomes Report on Status of Post-Holocaust Restitution

Many countries not yet fulfilled their obligation to return or compensate for property stolen by the Nazis more than 70 years ago, study finds Monday 24 April – More than 70 years after the conclusion of World War II, a significant proportion of the proceeds of the mass theft that accompanied the Holocaust remains in […]

Serbian Holocaust Survivors in 27 Countries Around the World to Receive New Aid

First country since 2009 Terezin Declaration to restitute heirless Jewish Holocaust-era property   NEW YORK – April 4, 2017 – A new program has been launched in Serbia that for the first time will provide urgent funds to Serbian Holocaust survivors all over the world. The benefits program is a result of a Serbian law approved on […]

WJRO Welcomes Congressional Action on Holocaust Restitution

The “JUST Act” Requires State Department to Report on Europe’s Progress Washington, D.C., February 28, 2017 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization welcomed the introduction of bicameral, bipartisan legislation in the United States Congress requiring the State Department to report on the progress European countries are making on Holocaust-era property restitution. The Justice for Uncompensated […]

City of Warsaw Releases Initial List of Properties Under Controversial Restitution Law

  Holocaust Survivors, Families have six months to come forward before Polish Government takes possession Jerusalem and New York, February 22, 2017 –The City of Warsaw released today an initial list of 48 properties under a controversial 2016 property restitution law that limits the ability of Holocaust survivors and their families to reclaim property unjustly […]

WJRO Helps Holocaust Survivors Reclaim Lost Warsaw Property

Act now or lose your right to property, says new Polish law New York, Dec. 6, 2016 – In response to a new Polish law that limits the ability of Holocaust survivors and their families to reclaim property in the City of Warsaw unjustly taken from them, WJRO has launched a new database of Warsaw […]

Global Support Building For Holocaust Restitution

EU, UK letters reaffirm commitments to help Holocaust Survivors JERUSALEM, Nov. 3 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization’s efforts to achieve a measure of justice and compassion for Holocaust survivors were bolstered this week when the President of the European Parliament, and the Government of the United Kingdom, declared their commitment to press for the […]

WJRO Applauds EU Parliament President’s Support for Holocaust Survivors, Restitution

BRUSSELS, Nov. 3 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization applauds European Parliament President Martin Schulz for fully endorsing the return of property and possessions unjustly taken from Jewish communities and victims during the Holocaust. “I personally acknowledge the importance of the restitution of and compensation for immovable property, Jewish art heritage and other cultural assets […]

Britain Reaffirms Support for Holocaust Restitution

The British government has reaffirmed its commitment to help Holocaust survivors whose property was unjustly taken during the Holocaust and its aftermath. In a letter last week to the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO), Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Baroness Anelay,  declared Britain’s […]

WJRO Statement on the Passing of Shimon Peres

The World Jewish Restitution Organization mourns the passing of Shimon Peres, Israel’s former prime minister, president, a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, and a staunch defender of the Jewish State and the Jewish people throughout his life. Peres died Sept. 28 at the age of 93. Gideon Taylor, WJRO Chief of Operations, issued the […]

WJRO Disappointed with Decision by Polish Constitutional Tribunal on Law Limiting Warsaw Restitution Claims

Case highlights need to resolve Holocaust-era restitution in Poland  NEW YORK, July 27 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) expressed disappointment with the decision today by the Polish Constitutional Tribunal to affirm the constitutionality of a law passed by the Polish Parliament that limits the rights of claimants to restitution for private property in […]

Legislation on Holocaust-era Property Restitution Introduced in U.S. House and Senate

Measure Would Require State Department’s Reporting of Countries’ Progress Washington, D.C., July 7, 2016 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization welcomed the introduction of bipartisan legislation in the U.S. House and Senate that would require reporting by the State Department on the progress European countries have made on Holocaust-era property restitution issues. The Justice for […]

World Jewish Restitution Organization Condemns Vandalization of Commemorative Monument in Poland

New York, May 30, 2016.  The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) condemned the vandalization in the past few days of a monument to the destroyed Jewish community of Raigrod, Poland which was erected in September 2014.   This follows the previous vandalization of the same monument in April 2015. “The vandalization of this monument twice in […]

WJRO Applauds Passage of Restitution Legislation in Romania

Legislation prioritizes Holocaust survivors’ property claims Third country to pass restitution legislation this year New York, May 10 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes legislation passed today by the Romanian parliament that will speed the processing of property claims filed by Holocaust victims and the Romanian Jewish community. The law – a product […]

WJRO Announces ‘Call to Action’ Social Media Campaign on Holocaust-era Property Restitution Urging Intergenerational Campaign for Justice for Holocaust Remembrance Day on May 5

WHY ARE HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS STILL AWAITING RESTITUTION MORE THAN 70 YEARS AFTER THE HOLOCAUST? Change.org Petition to Heads of State Calls for Fulfillment of Commitments made in 2009 Terezin Declaration New York, May 2 –Holocaust survivors are still waiting for governments across Europe to provide restitution of, or compensation for, property stolen during the Shoah. […]

WJRO Statement on British Archives of Holocaust Survivor Applications to Compensation Fund

NEW YORK, March 31 – Gideon Taylor, chair of operations of the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO), released the following statement on recently-released archives showing Holocaust survivors’ applications in the 1960s for a British government-administered compensation fund: “These painful stories are a stark reminder that the struggle to provide even a small measure of justice […]

WJRO Commends Passage of Legislation Restituting Jewish Property in Latvia

WJRO Commends Passage of Legislation Restituting Jewish Property in Latvia ‘Important First Step in Addressing Remaining Communal Property Issues’ New York, Feb. 25 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomed legislation passed by the Latvian parliament that restitutes five formerly Jewish-owned properties to the Council of Jewish Communities of Latvia. The laws’ passage comes […]

Romanian Holocaust Survivors in Israel Receive Additional Funds

Restitution of Romanian Jewish Communal Property Source of Proceeds JERUSALEM, Feb. 22 – The Caritatea Foundation, a partnership of the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) and the Federation of Jewish Communities in Romania (FEDROM), today announced the distribution of NIS 5.8 million to support 947 vulnerable Nazi victims of Romanian origin who now reside in […]

WJRO Applauds Passage of Serbian Legislation Addressing Heirless Property Restitution

WJRO Applauds Passage of Serbian Legislation Addressing Heirless Property Restitution Law to Aid Local Jewish Community, Serbian Holocaust Victims Worldwide New York, Feb. 12 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomed today’s passage of Serbian legislation that will address heirless and unclaimed Jewish property expropriated during the Holocaust. WJRO played a key role in […]

WJRO’s New Website Supports Advocacy Efforts For Holocaust-era Property Restitution

Revamped Site Also Provides Latest News, Comprehensive Information New York, Feb. 10 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization has launched a new website that will serve as a resource for Holocaust survivors and their families as well as for the growing movement of advocates seeking to resolve Holocaust-era property restitution issues in Eastern and Central […]

WJRO Welcomes Addition of Holocaust Reference To EU General Data Protection Regulation

Provision Would Ensure Open Archives NEW YORK, Dec. 20 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomed an agreement by the European Union on a provision that amends the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to include a specific reference to the Holocaust. As a result of the new language, Holocaust research would not be blocked […]

European Parliamentarians From 18 Countries Join To Call for Holocaust-era Restitution

BRUSSELS, Belgium, October 14 – Lawmakers from 18 nations today urged European Parliament President Martin Schulz to increase the body’s attention to the restitution of Holocaust-era property, noting the need for resolution seven decades after the end of World War II. Thirty-six MEPs signed the letter supporting Holocaust survivors, stressing that European parliamentarians “bear a […]

WJRO Welcomes Polish President’s Refusal To Sign Law Limiting Warsaw Restitution Claims

Calls for Poland to Allow All Property Owners to File Claims NEW YORK, Aug. 4 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomed the decision last night by President Bronisław Komorowski of Poland not to sign legislation that would limit the ability of Holocaust survivors, their families, and other rightful owners to recover property in […]

New York Comptrollers Stringer and DiNapoli, California Treasurer Chiang Call on Polish Prime Minister To Restore Property to Holocaust Victims and Heirs

World Jewish Restitution Organization Lauds Efforts of Financial Officers NEW YORK, NY, July 30, 2015 – On Thursday, New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer, New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, and California State Treasurer John Chiang released a joint letter to Polish Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz calling on her government to adopt measures […]

Bipartisan Congressional Letter Advocates For Holocaust-era Property Restitution in Europe

Representatives Seek Justice for Holocaust Victims Washington, D.C., July 1, 2015 – Forty-six members of the U.S. House of Representatives sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry today urging the administration to continue to advocate for Holocaust-era property restitution in Europe and expressing the commitment by Congress to press for restitution on behalf […]

U.S. Museums Fail to Address Nazi-Era Stolen Art Claims

WJRO Report: Legislation Would Ensure Justice for Holocaust Victims, Heirs  Resolutions Should Focus on Merit, Not Technicalities  New York, June 25 – Prominent U.S. museums have evaded the restitution of Nazi-looted artworks to their rightful owners and heirs by refusing to resolve claims on their facts and merits and by asserting technical defenses, such as […]

WJRO Commends Statement of Special Holocaust Envoys On Property Restitution in Serbia

WJRO Delegation Meets with Top Serbian Officials Belgrade, Serbia, May 11 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization applauds a strong statement issued today by a multinational group of high-ranking officials that addresses Holocaust-era affairs and anti-Semitism. The joint statement – the first of its kind – calls on the Serbian government to address outstanding property […]

Canada’s Commitment to Advocate for Restitution Of Holocaust-Era Property in Poland and Across Europe Praised by Jewish Groups, Holocaust Survivors

Powerful Statements by Foreign Minister, Opposition Leaders — Canadian Diplomats to Raise Issue at Highest Levels Photo of Canadian Flag by Justin Tang, The Canadian Press Ottawa, March 12, 2015 – The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA), the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO), and the Canadian Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Descendants (CJHSD) welcomed […]

WJRO Delegation Meets With Romanian PM to Focus On Speeding Holocaust-Era Property Restitution

Working Group to Be Created Jerusalem, Feb. 25 – Top Romanian officials indicated that they would support efforts to improve and quicken the process of restituting Holocaust-era property claims. The announcement comes after two days of high-level meetings that included the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) delegation, together with representatives of the U.S. and Israeli […]

WJRO Helps to Secure Property Restitution For Croatian Jewish Community

‘Important First Step in Addressing Nation’s Holocaust Legacy’ JERUSALEM, Dec. 3, 2014 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) welcomes the Croatian government’s transfer of a valuable parcel of land and office building in central Zagreb to the local Jewish community. Croatia will restitute the government-owned property at 6 Dezmanova St., a 6-story building situated […]

WJRO Calls on U.S. Museum Accreditation Group To Clarify Position on Nazi-Looted Art Cases

AAM Should Ensure Ethical Standards for American Museums New York, Nov. 11 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) called on the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) to clarify whether it would review member museums’ handling of cases concerning art looted by the Nazi regime. WJRO Chair of Operations Gideon Taylor wrote yesterday to Ford […]

WJRO Appoints David Feinman As First-Ever D.C. Representative

Campaign for Holocaust Property Restitution to Expand New York, Nov. 10 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) is pleased to announce the appointment of David Feinman as their first-ever Washington representative. Feinman will lead WJRO’s efforts to marshal U.S. government support for the restitution of property looted by the Nazis and their allies and/or […]

WJRO Calls on Incoming Polish PM to Return Stolen Private Property

Rightful Owners Should Get Property Plundered by Nazis, Nationalized by Communists Incoming PM Should ‘Make History,’ Says WJRO NEW YORK, Sept. 14 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) congratulates Dr. Ewa Kopacz on her upcoming nomination for Polish prime minister and urges her to provide justice for Holocaust survivors whose property was plundered by […]

Jewish Groups Welcome British Statement On Need for Poland to Focus on Holocaust-Era Restitution. U.K. Foreign Secretary William Hague on Poland: ‘More Can be Done’

April 11, 2014 – The World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) and the Board of Deputies of British Jews welcome the British Foreign Secretary’s statement on the need for Poland to resolve outstanding World War II-era restitution claims.  “We remain hopeful that the Polish government will revive legislation and will continue to encourage them to do so,” […]

At Prague Conference Jewish Groups Demand Return of Stolen Property ‘Holocaust Survivors Deserve Better’

Prague, Czech Republic – Almost seven decades after the Holocaust, the demand for justice for Holocaust survivors has intensified. During a two-day conference in Prague held this week to review progress made with respect to the restitution of property seized during the Holocaust, the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) urged Central and Eastern European countries to […]

Latest Coverage

2017

2016

Coverage of Letter from European Parliament President Letter Supporting Restitution (November 2016):

EU Parliament supports Jewish property restitutionYnet News, November 5, 2016

European Parliament head reiterates support for restitutionJTA News, November 4, 2016

Coverage of Polish Constitutional Tribunal Decision on Warsaw Restitution Law (July 2016):

Polish Court Limits World War II-Era Restitution Claims in Warsaw, The New York Times, July 27, 2016

Polish Court Upholds Controversial Law on Warsaw Property, Haaretz, July 27, 2016

Coverage of Passage of Romanian Restitution Legislation (May 2016):

Romania Takes Steps Toward Restitution to Holocaust Survivors, The New York Times, May 10, 2016

Romania Passes Holocaust Restitution Law, as 40,000 Claims Not Yet Processed, Forward, May 10, 2016

Romanian Parliament Approves Expediting Holocaust Claims, Haaretz, May 10, 2016

Coverage of WJRO’s Call to Action, Justice for Holocaust Survivors: Property Restitution (May 2016):

WJRO’s Gideon Taylor on “The Intelligence Report with Trish Regan”, FOX Business Network, May 6, 2016

Holocaust survivors ‘dying in poverty while awaiting compensation’, The Guardian, May 5, 2016

Coverage of Passage of Serbian Legislation Addressing Heirless Property Restitution (February 2016):

Serbian Payout Is ‘Big Restitution Story’The Jewish Week, March 1, 2016

Serbian law offers compensation for seized Jewish property without heirsJTA, February 14, 2016

Serbia passes Holocaust restitution lawYnet News, February 12, 2016

2015

Holocaust Survivor Stories In 2015: In Poland, The Fight To Get Their Property BackInternational Business Times, November 14, 2015

New Pressure On Poland For Property RestitutionThe Jewish Week, August 12, 2015

Poland, Make Restitution, Urge State Officials In LetterThe Jewish Week, July 30, 2015

‘Reclaiming’ Jewish History, JTA, July 1, 2015

Report: Museums Increasingly Avoid Returning Nazi-Looted Art, U.S. News & World ReportJune 25, 2015

‘It’s time for justice’: Canadian Holocaust survivors seek restitutionCTV News (Canada), June 11, 2015

GUEST VOICE: Why I’m speaking up for Holocaust restitutionCanadian Jewish News, June 10, 2015

Holocaust Survivors of Polish Origin Now Eligible for PaymentseJewishPhilanthropy, May 20, 2015

Canada’s commitment to advocate for restitution of Holocaust-era property in Poland and across Europe praised by Jewish groups, Holocaust survivors, Ottawa Jewish Bulletin (Canada), March 12, 2015

Romania pledges to resolve restitution issues on Jewish propertyJTA, March 8, 2015

2014

Croatia giving Zagreb Jews $4 million property in Holocaust restitution, JTA, December 3, 2014

Nations Called Lax in Returning Art Looted From Jews, New York Times, September 10, 2014

World Jewish Restitution Organization Letter to the Editor on PolandThe Economist, July 19, 2014

Five years after landmark declaration, Holocaust restitution moves slowly in Eastern EuropeJTA, April 20, 2014

Coverage of Letter from British Foreign Secretary William Hague to British Parliamentarians (March 2014):

Jews laud Hague’s restitution letterJerusalem Post, April 14, 2014

UK foreign minister wants ‘full resolution’ on Holocaust restitutionNews from Poland, April 11, 2014

William Hague pledges to push Poland on Holocaust restitutionJewish Chronicle, April 11, 2014

William Hague vows to press Poland on Holocaust compensationJewish News, April 4, 2014

Coverage of House of Lords Debate on Restitution and Letter from 50 British Parliamentarians to Prime Minister Donald Tusk of Poland (February 2014):

Poland’s JewsTimes of London, March 6, 2014

Government spokesperson says unnecessary pressure re: HolocaustOneNet, February 28, 2014

Great Britain: House of Lords for the restitution of Jewish property in PolandPAP, February 27, 2014

UK presses Poland to compensate Holocaust victimsJewish News, February 27, 2014

Poland urged to do more to provide restitution to Holocaust victimsJewish Chronicle, February 27, 2014

U.K. government committed to restitution of Nazi-era propertyHa’aretz, February 27, 2014

UK politicians push Poland to compensate Holocaust victimsPolskie Radio, February 26, 2014

Brits write to Tusk on restitution of Jewish propertyTVN24, February 26, 2014

House of Lords tomorrow will take care of property restitution in PolandRzeczpospolita, February 26, 2014

Poland and the Chocolate FactoryTimes of Israel, February 26, 2014

British lawmakers urging Poland to pass Holocaust restitution lawsYnet, February 25, 2014

British lawmakers press Poland on Holocaust restitutionJTA, February 24, 2014

U.K. MPs, Jewish groups urge Poland: Return property Nazis stoleHa’aretz, February 24, 2014

British MPs demand Polish action on restitutionJerusalem Post, February 24, 2014

2013

Coverage of an Open Letter to President Komorowski of Poland (November 2013):

Holocaust restitution body slams Poland for ‘unfulfilled commitments, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, November 4, 2013

Jewish property restitution still thorn in Polish-Israel relations, Thenews.pl, November 4, 2013

Prezydent Komorowski w Izraelu. List otwarty: “Co z restytucją mienia?” Gazeta Wyborcza, November 3, 2013

An Open Letter to President Komorowski of Poland, Jerusalem Post, November 2, 2013