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NEWS - Lodges and B'nai B'rith updates

Roman Gajdos, member of the Concordia Lodge of Kosice, reports:

Unknown vandals damaged 58 gravestones in the Jewish Cemetery of Košice, probably during the night of 22nd April 2012. The cost of the damage is estimated at EUR 50,000.

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A message from Ralph Hofmann, President of B'nai B'rith Europe

"On Thursday, 26th April 2012 (4th day of Iyar) we join in celebration of Israel’s Day of Independence. Our hearts and thoughts are with the people of Israel and we admire their strength in the face of constant adversity.

We, in the Diaspora, are well aware of rising anti-semitism and it is the very existence of our own state which gives us the strength to face this. The people of Israel have every right to be proud of their achievements. We know that, whatever the obstacle, Israel and our people will prevail.

So, MAZAL TOV ISRAEL, on your 64th anniversary. May you go from strength to strength."
From sunset yesterday, 18th April 2012, Jews around the world stood together to remember the victims of the Nazis.

The period of the Shoah should also be remembered by those non-Jews who allowed this terrible event to happen, who looked elsewhere when their neighbours were taken away. In recent years the dangers to our people have increased at frightening speed and the existence of the State of Israel has become more important than ever before.

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The President and members of the Executive Committee of B’nai B’rith Europe offer their sincere condolences to Brother Richard Abitbol on the sad loss of his mother. We send him our wishes of sympathy on his bereavement.

"Together with the Executive Committee of B’nai B’rith Europe, I send you our wishes for a Happy and Joyful Pesach and ask you to join us in our prayers for peace in Israel.

Our people are going through trying times at this moment and all of us are deeply concerned by recent events. The solidarity of our sisters and brothers in B’nai B’rith, however, and the ideals of our order, enable us to view the future positively. Pesach is the symbol of freedom. We shall prevail if we stand together united in strength and in our pride to be Jews."

Ralph Hofmann, President, B’nai B’rith Europe

Washington, D.C., March 26, 2012: B’nai B’rith International welcomes the decision by the Supreme Court of the United States directing the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to decide on the constitutionality of a case regarding whether Americans born in Jerusalem may cite Israel as their birthplace on their U.S. passport.

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