We are pleased to inform you that the Lithuanian Jewish Community (LJC) and synagogue have re-opened their doors today following a brief closure. On Tuesday, LJC Chairwoman Faina Kukliansky decided to halt all operations after the synagogue and community center began receiving threatening anti-Semitic phone calls and letters.
The threats were in response to a decision last week by Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius to order the removal of a plaque honoring Jonas Noreika from an external wall of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. Noreika was a high-ranking police officer who is believed to have personally overseen the murder of Jews. He has been honored in Lithuania as a hero for fighting against the Soviet Union, alongside Nazi forces.
Upon learning of the closure, NCSEJ immediately contacted Ms. Kukliansky, the Lithuanian Embassy in Washington, and the U.S. State Department to urge a resolution of the situation.
NCSEJ welcomes the Lithuanian Government’s statement of support and will continue monitoring the situation for any future developments regarding the Lithuanian Jewish Community.