Friday, May 28, 2010

Restitution: US Senator Criticizes Poland on Property Restitution

US Congress Senator Calls for More Action on Property Restitution

Polskie Radio has reported that head of the Helsinki Commission for the United States Congress, Senator Ben Cardin, has criticized Poland for delaying the process of dealing with the restitution of Jewish property confiscated during and after WW II.

Read the full article here.

According to the article:
During the session of the Helsinki Commission in Washington, Senator Ben Cardin indicated Poland and Lithuania as the two countries which have done
least to solve the problem. “Successive Polish governments promised that the nissue of compensation will be dealt with. None has done anything about it,” he said.

In March 2001, the Polish parliament approved a law for the restitution of private property, though the right to file a claim was limited to nthose with Polish citizenship as of December 31, 1999. The law was subsequently vetoed by the President of Poland. The Terezin Declaration, a nonbinding set of guiding principles aimed at faster, more open and transparent restitution of art, private and communal property taken by force or under duress during the Holocaust, was approved at the Prague Holocaust Era Assets Conference in June last year. Poland was a signature to the non-binding agreement.

Senator Cardin added he was aware that due to the relocation of borders and massive resettlements of people following the war, property restitution in Poland is a complicated issue. “Solving of the problem is difficult but not impossible” he added.

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