NEWS

Greek Jews welcome Russian decision to return Holocaust archives 

greek-jews-welcome-russian-decision-to-return-holocaust-archives

Greece’s Jewish community Thursday welcomed “with immense emotion” a decision by Russian President Vladimir Putin to hand over the Jewish Holocaust archives that were taken to Moscow after the end of World War II. 

The largest part of the archives concerns the once-thriving Jewish community in Thessaloniki, Greece’s second-largest city. 

Thessaloniki’s pre-war archives were looted in July 11, 1942 by the Nazis who plundered archives, books and religious artifacts from 30 synagogues, libraries and communal institutions in the city. 

After the Soviet Army took over Berlin in May 1945, those archives were transferred to Moscow, where they were kept for eight decades in secret files. 

“Our history returns home at last!” the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (KIS) said in a press release Thursday. 

“It is an achievement of vital significance to our country’s history. We express our thankfulness to the Greek prime minister and all those who have worked and continue working for the realization of the return of the pre-war Jewish archives to our country.”