Olmert promises to look into Nativ ops

Israeli gov't group has been working in Germany without consulting local Jews.

By HAVIV RETTIG GUR
August 13, 2007 11:22
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Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told a German Jewish leader on Monday morning that he would specifically look into Nativ operations in Germany. The verbal promise was made to Charlotte Knobloch, head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, at a meeting. Knobloch had protested that Nativ, an Israeli government agency charged with Jewish identity education among Jews from the Former Soviet Union, has been sent into Germany to work with the estimated 200,000 FSU Jews living there, without consulting the Jewish community. Last month, Nativ was formally permitted to enter Germany, where some 80-90 percent of Jews are immigrants from the FSU. Its operations are coordinated with the Jewish agency. The German Jewish leadership that is recognized by the German government only represents the minority of veteran Germans. That leadership with Knobloch at its head, had threatened to turn to German Chancellor Angela Merkel to keep the Israeli organization from entering and operating in Germany. Since the approval of Nativ operations in Germany, its formal leadership has not voiced its opinion on the matter, and no known appeal has been made to Merkel.

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