Kaunas Synagogue Vandalized with Heil Hitler Graffiti

Kaunas Synagogue Vandalized with Heil Hitler Graffiti

The entrance to the Choral Synagogue in Kaunas was vandalized with a Heil Hitler inscription in black paint. The desecration was discovered Saturday morning and was likely committed during the foregoing night.

Lithuanian Jewish Community chairwoman Faina Kukliansky says this anti-Semitic attack against the synagogue in Kaunas confirms attacks on Jews are continuing. There have been five in just the last few months in Vilnius, Kaunas and Šiauliai. Despite criminal investigations, no one has been brought to account so far.

Police spokesman Ramūnas Matonis told BNS said the incidents were undoubtedly anti-Semitic. He said investigations have been started on sowing ethnic discord.

LJC chairwoman Kukliansky said the attacks coming just before important Lithuanian Jewish events were especially surprising.

A regional conference on Holocaust restitution is scheduled for early December in Vilnius. The conference will survey the experience of European countries in returning property and notable historians will present their research on the events of World War II in Lithuania. The conference will mark the 10th anniversary of Terezin declaration signed by 47 countries including Lithuania in 2009, agreeing on measures to right economic wrongs that accompanied the Holocaust against the Jews and other victims of Nazi persecution in Europe. The declaration emphasizes the need to restore communal and personal real estate.

Kukliansky said she regretted the Lithuanian conference hadn’t attracted the attention of Lithuanian leaders and state institutions, and said it could have been a good platform for learning about the experience of other countries and for getting acquainted with important Holocaust historians. The Goodwill Foundation is holding the conference, a foundation created to administer Jewish communal property restitution funds.