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    International Holocaust Remembrance Day at the Jewish Museum in Moscow. (File)

    European States Fail to Return Holocaust Survivors' Property Taken During WWII

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    Many European states have failed to handle the property theft of Jews prior and during World War II.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Many European states, including Poland and those in the Baltic, have failed to comply with the so-called Terezin declaration, which was signed in 2009 to handle the looting and property theft of Jews prior and during World War II, a study by the European Shoah Legacy Institute (ESLI) revealed on Monday.

    On June 30, 2009, the 47 states attending the Prague Conference on Holocaust Era Assets signed the Terezin Declaration. The document calls to strengthen and sustain previous efforts in ensuring the return of property taken from Jewish people during the Holocaust era.

    "The Study found that most European states have not complied with the Terezin Declaration and accompanying Guidelines and Best Practices regarding restitution of immovable heirless property. Some have only partially complied," the report said.

    According to the ESLI, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, Poland, and Slovenia have not enacted the property legislation.

    The authors of the report note that the Baltic States and Poland had the highest percentage of deaths in its Jewish population in all of Europe. These states have "likely the largest percentage of heirless property due to the number of deaths," the report said.

    At the same time, the study revealed that while some Western European nations were found to have complied with the Terezin Declaration, "many have only partially complied."

    The ESLI is an international, independent, secular and, politically unaffiliated advocacy group created in 2010 to monitor progress on and advocate for the provisions of the Terezin Declaration.

    Israel observes Yom HaShoah on Monday, its annual Holocaust Remembrance Day, to pay tribute to the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust.

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    property, looting, jews, Holocaust, World War II, Baltic Region, Poland
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