Monday, December 14, 2015

Lithuania: Jewish Museum Opens Anti-Semitism Center

From Forward:

Lithuania’s largest Jewish museum opened a center dedicated to combating anti-Semitism and preserving Litvak Jewish identity domestically and abroad.

The Vilna Gaon Jewish State Museum opened its Centre of Litvak Culture and Art last week, the Baltic News Service reported.

Funded by the Lithuanian state and set up based on the experience of Polish experts on the study of that country’s Jewish history, the new center, which has a dozen workers, will place a special emphasis on the “dissemination of information and education in order to overcome negative stereotypes, stubborn myths and anti-Semitic views,” and on “promoting tolerance and mutual understanding in society,” according to the museum’s website.

The center’s opening comes amid controversy over the government’s plan to renovate and open a deserted conference center that was built on what used to be a large Jewish cemetery in Vilnius. The Jewish Community of Lithuania, which the government regards as the official representative of Litvak Jewry, endorses the project but prominent Litvak rabbis from around the world oppose it.

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