2017-02-07 20:10:00

FJCR president surprised with accusations against Sochi rabbi, hopes for positive outcome

Moscow, February 7, Interfax - The Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia (FJCR) is perplexed with the recent accusations against Sochi Rabbi Ari Edelkopf.

It has become known that the rabbi is under the threat of deportation. Edelkopf informed at his page in a social net that he had faced an accusation according to subparagraph 1, point 1, article 7 of the law on Legal Status of Foreign Citizens in Russia (calls for violent changes of the constitutional order in Russia, committing other actions threatening Russia's security or its citizens).

"We are surprised with such accusations addressed to a rabbi. Historically, Jews and especially rabbis stick to a principle "dina de-malkhuta dina," which means that "the law of the land is the law", which suggests entire law-obedience," FJCR President Alexander Boroda told Interfax-Religion on Tuesday.

According to him, it is also perplexing that the essence of claims against Rabbi Edelkopf has not been voiced.

"I don't think it is a manifestation of anti-Semitism. Most likely, someone of local officials decided to "tick the box" in a coming report on opposing illegal migration," Boroda said.

He reports that the FJCR is conducting a dialogue with the authorities in order to settle the problems around the Sochi rabbi. As to the legal assistance, it was decided that a Sochi attorney, who had already worked with Edelkopf, would take up the case.

The FJCR president is optimistic about the outcome of this situation as "the Federation of Jewish Communities has a good record of interacting with authoritative agencies of all levels."

"For the years of our joint work many synagogues were given back to the communities, land lots for building new community centers were allotted. Russian president Vladimir Putin personally supported the construction of the Jewish museum in Moscow, works of the Center of Tolerance working at the museum are actively used to struggle against xenophobia in Russia," Boroda said.

Accepting that "from time to time" there were "disputable cases" in relations with authorities, the head of the Federation of Jewish Communities noted that "they have always managed to find a decision acceptable for all."

"We will respect any decision of the court taken in compliance with the law," Boroda summed up.