russian vets 224.88.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
A law providing financial benefits to World War II veterans, including soldiers who fought in the Red Army during Russia's two-year pact with Nazi Germany, is an immoral violation of the norms of the State of Israel, an attorney who represents Holocaust survivors in Israel said Tuesday.
The law, which was originally passed in 2000 and was recently updated, includes stipends for veterans of the Red Army from the start of World War II in 1939, a time when Russia was allied with Nazi Germany.
"It is inconceivable that Israel should provide financial benefits to people who have not proven that they did not serve as accomplices to the Nazis," attorney Uri Huppert said.
Huppert conceded that he did not know if any World War II veterans who served in the Red Army during 1939-1941 were even living in Israel, but insisted that it was a matter of principle that the law be limited to veterans of the Red Army who fought the Nazis from 1941 onwards.
He noted that during Russia's pact with Nazi Germany, the Red Army killed tens of thousands of Polish officers at Katin, 10 percent of whom were Jewish.
MK Marina Solodkin (Kadima), one of the co-sponsors of the law, said in response that none of the veterans from 1939-1941 were still alive.
The issue came as Pensioners Affairs Minister Rafi Eitan recently suggested that Germany increase Holocaust reparations to needy survivors in Israel due to the influx of tens of thousands of elderly immigrants from the former Soviet Union.
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