EU opposed to funding anti-Semitic radio station

Ultra-nationalist Polish station considered antisemitic by Jews in Poland and worldwide.

By ETGAR LEFKOVITS
September 24, 2007 22:26
1 minute read.
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The European Union is highly unlikely to fund a Polish ultra-nationalist Catholic radio station which is infamous for its anti-Semitic programming, a European Union official said Monday. The chances that the controversial Polish radio station Radio Maryja would get EU funding for the expansion of a journalism school are "close to zero," a European Commission spokesman in Israel said. The school was on a list of 350 projects that Warsaw had recommended receive EU funding. The 15.5 million Euros in EU funding was to have been part of regional funding that the EU offers to all 27 member states, especially those that joined the EU in 2004. The ultra-nationalist Catholic radio station, which is a strong supporter of the conservative Polish government, has a long record of anti-Semitic broadcasts. After reports over the potential funding to the controversial station surfaced, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso made clear that all projects that get EU funding would have to conform to "European values." A new clause states that beneficiaries must offer "masters or PhD-level qualifications" and have "international educational standards" verified by "objective rankings." The issue comes just weeks after Israel and American Jewish groups urged the Polish government to act following the most recent anti-Semitic remarks by the powerful head of the radio station, Father Tadeusz Rydzyk. Rydzyk reportedly accused the Jews of greed in a potential government compensation deal on confiscated property, and denounced Polish President Lech Kaczynski as a "fraudster who is in the pockets of the Jewish lobby." Last week, the head of the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors in Israel urged the European Union not to offer the station any financial support.

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