01 July 2013, 11:28
Russian Culture Ministry files lawsuit against U.S. Congress Library over non-return of Schneerson library books (updated)
Moscow, July 1, Interfax - The Russian Ministry of Culture together with the Russian State Library are determined to have seven books from the Schneerson Library retuned by the Library of the U.S. Congress through arbitration.
"On July 1 the Ministry of Culture and the Russian State Library filed a motion at the Moscow Arbitration Court to bind the Library of the U.S. Congress to return seven books from the Schneerson library of the collection of the RSL center of Oriental literature received in 1994 for temporary use under the international library exchange system," a statement of the ministry press service says.
Agudas Chasidei Chabad nonprofit organization to which the Library of Congress lent the books is also party to the litigation.
The statement says that the ministry and RSL were forced to take the matter to court given the absence of any reaction from the Library of Congress to the RSL demand to return the books "having national significance."
The Schneerson Library is a collection of old Jewish books and manuscripts, put together by rabbis of the Chabad Jewish community in the late 18th century in Belarus IT is one of the Jewish religious relics.
Part of the collection amassed by Lubavitcher Rebbe Yosef Yitzchok Schneerson, was nationalized by Bolsheviks in 1918 and ended up at the Russian State Library. The other part was taken out of the Soviet Union by Schneerson, who emigrated in the 1930s.
About 25,000 pages of manuscripts got into the hands of the Nazis, and were later seized by the Red Army and handed over to the Russian State Military Archive.
Lubavitchers (adherents of one of the Hasidic movements) have sought the restitution of the Schneerson collection since the late 1980s. According to some reports, at the time Russia's first president Boris Yeltsin promised to James Baker, Secretary of State in the George Bush Sr. administration, that the sacred documents would be returned to the Hasids.
On August 6, 2010, a federal judge in Washington, Royce Lamberth, ruled that the Hasids proved the legitimacy of their claims to the ancient Jewish books and manuscripts, which, in his definition, are kept at the Russian State Library and the Russian Military Archive illegally.
The Russian Foreign Ministry challenged the judgment.
- Crimea does not need sexual minorities - Aksyonov 02 September 2014, 17:56
- Russian school in Bethlehem to strengthen Russian-Palestinian ties - Putin 02 September 2014, 10:01
- In order to come to Russia Dalai Lama must quit politics - Lavrov 28 August 2014, 10:13
- Wahhabism supporters use Internet to campaign for extremism - Kadyrov 26 August 2014, 17:47
- Kadyrov asks clergy to resist early marriages in Chechnya 26 August 2014, 14:58
- Yamalo-Nenets authorities deny violations of Muslims' rights at local prison 26 August 2014, 14:57
- Russian social network VK says Islamic State accounts blocked 26 August 2014, 10:05
- Church burns down in Donetsk as shell hits is - diocese 26 August 2014, 10:03
- Patriarch Kirill again calls on UN, Council of Europe, OSCE to help stop fighting in Ukraine 25 August 2014, 17:08
- Ukrainian army deliberately targets orthodox churches - archbishop of Gorlovka 25 August 2014, 16:55
- Pope Francis sends greetings to Ukraine on Independence Day 25 August 2014, 10:17
- Patriarch Kirill asks Poroshenko to stop war, prays for its victims 25 August 2014, 10:16
- Shell damages Donetsk mosque 22 August 2014, 14:20
- Islamists killing of U.S. reporter Foley is barbaric - Moscow 22 August 2014, 11:21
- Historical muftiate revived in Crimea 22 August 2014, 11:09
- Ukrainian shell hits church in central Lugansk 21 August 2014, 16:21
- Clerics bless humanitarian aid sent to Ukraine 21 August 2014, 13:44
- Twice as many churches to be built in Moscow in frames of Program 200 20 August 2014, 13:25
- Church from Moscow Program-200 can be included in world’s five masterpieces of mosaic art 20 August 2014, 13:21
- Patriarch Kirill demands intl protection of Orthodox Christians in Ukraine 20 August 2014, 10:13
- Deputy mufti murder in Vladikavkaz 18 August 2014, 11:42
- Ukrainian Orthodox Church urges gunmen in eastern Ukraine to lay down arms 18 August 2014, 10:06
- Patriarch Kirill: Uniates, schismatics seeking to eradicate Orthodoxy in Ukraine 18 August 2014, 10:05
- Patriarch Kirill sends greetings to Metropolitan Onufry 18 August 2014, 10:03
- Metropolitan Onufry enthroned as primate of Ukrainian Church 18 August 2014, 10:01
- Court suspends Kharkov authorities' resolution giving Russian senator title of Kharkiv freeman for building churches 15 August 2014, 12:50
- N. Korea's missile test-launch not connected with arrival of Pope Francis in Seoul - Pyongyang 15 August 2014, 12:43
- Far-right groups threaten Kiev Region priest with reprisals 15 August 2014, 11:54
- Ukrainian Orthodox Church ready for dialogue with "Kiev Patriarchate", Autocephalous Church 15 August 2014, 11:05
- Production of Kosher food boosts thanks to sanctions 15 August 2014, 10:04