Bank Leumi to return Holocaust assets

Bank allegedly made NIS 30 m. in interest from Holocaust victims' accounts.

June 11, 2007 12:50
Bank Leumi to return Holocaust assets

Holocaust survive 298.88. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])


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Bank Leumi will transfer NIS 20 million to a company responsible for locating and returning Holocaust victims' assets, after it was claimed that the bank had made NIS 30 million in interest from the victims' accounts. The bank is set to consult a retired Supreme Court president to examine whether more money would be required to be returned to Holocaust survivors. The state corporation charged with seeking out heirs of unclaimed assets belonging to Holocaust victims in Israel, recently called on the government to freeze the privatization of Bank Leumi until it transferred the victims' funds to their heirs, after the corporation discovered dormant bank accounts belonging to Holocaust survivors. Thousands of survivors have been claiming for years that the bank held enormous sums in dozens of dormant accounts. An investigation that was carried out by an inquiry committee headed by Labor MK Colette Avital found that Israeli banks held thousands of accounts belonging to Holocaust victims. Army Radio reported that the value of the dormant accounts amounted to an estimated NIS one billion, half of which was held in Bank Leumi.

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