International Consensus on Restitution of Holocaust-Era Property

Terezin Declaration / Guidelines and Best Practices / Immovable Property Review Conference / ESLI

There is now an international consensus on the restitution of Holocaust era-property.

WJRO was an important participant in the 2009 Holocaust Era Assets Conference in Prague, presenting papers on Holocaust-era confiscated communal and private immovable propertyJudaica, and art. The Terezin Declaration on Holocaust Era Assets and Related Issues was approved by 47 countries at the conclusion of the Prague Conference and announced a program of activities geared towards ensuring assistance, redress and remembrance for victims of Nazi persecution.

On June 9, 2010, 43 countries endorsed the Guidelines and Best Practices for the Restitution and Compensation of Immovable (Real) Property Confiscated or Otherwise Wrongfully Seized by the Nazis, Fascists and Their Collaborators during the Holocaust (Shoah) Era between 1933-1945, Including the Period of World War II.  WJRO played an active role in developing this document, which reaffirms the Terezin Declaration, identifies principles, and provides detailed rules for countries to apply in their property restitution legislation and claims processes.

In November 2012, WJRO participated with 39 countries, the European Commission, and non-governmental organizations in the Immovable Property Review Conference in Prague.  Participants reaffirmed commitment to the Terezin Declaration and the Guidelines and Best Practices and discussed practical ways to advance property restitution in Europe.

WJRO has also supported the development of the European Shoah Legacy Institute (ESLI), which was created in 2010 by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic as an outgrowth of the Terezin Declaration.

For more information about these conferences, documents and organizations, please click the links at the top of this page.