Hungary, Poland, Spain, Russia and Italy falling short on returning Nazi-looted art

(JTA) – Five countries have not fulfilled their commitments to return Nazi-looted art to their rightful owners, a U.S. official said.

Stuart Eizenstat, an adviser to the U.S. State Department, in 1998 negotiated the Washington Principles, a treaty calling on signers to make their best efforts to return art stolen by the Nazis during World War II. He spoke Monday in Berlin to mark the 20th anniversary of the agreement signed by 44 countries, The New York Times reported. [Read more…]

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Warsaw airport requires Israeli musician to remove strings from his cello because they were ‘too dangerous’

(JTA) – An Israeli cellist had the strings of his instrument confiscated at the airport in Warsaw, after employees determined they were “too dangerous” to take on board with him.

The strings on Amit Peled’s instrument had to be removed and he had to surrender his extra set of strings early on Monday morning at Warsaw Chopin airport, he told the Classic FM digital radio station by email. [Read more…]

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Polish parliament commemorates Isaac Bashevis Singer

Isaac Bashevis Singer at the 1988 Miami Book Fair International. (MDCarchives)
Isaac Bashevis Singer at the 1988 Miami Book Fair International. (MDCarchives)

Isaac Bashevis Singer at the 1988 Miami Book Fair International. (MDCarchives)

WARSAW, Poland (JTA) – The Polish parliament adopted a resolution commemorating Yiddish novelist Isaac Bashevis Singer, who 40 years ago received the Nobel Prize for Literature.

In the resolution, Polish lawmakers stressed that Singer’s work – in Yiddish – is an integral part of Polish cultural heritage. [Read more…]

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UN General Assembly approves Palestine as head of largest bloc of developing countries

Mahmoud Abbas addressing the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, Sept. 22, 2016. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas addressing the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, Sept. 22, 2016. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

(JTA) – The United Nations General Assembly voted to approve the observer state of Palestine as the head of the largest bloc of developing countries.

Some 146 countries on Tuesday voted in favor of Palestine to head the Group of 77. Three countries – Israel, the United States and Australia – voted against, and 15 countries abstained. Twenty-nine countries did not vote. [Read more…]

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