Wiesenthal Center welcomes deportation to Germany from the United States of Trawniki guard Jakob Palij

August 21, 2018

Jerusalem-The Simon Wiesenthal Center today welcomed the deportation to Germany of Trawniki guard Jakob Palij (pictured), which marked the culmination of a lengthy effort to remove him from the United States.

In a statement issued here today by its chief Nazi-hunter Dr. Efraim Zuroff, the Center praised the perseverance and dedication of the American authorities.

According to Zuroff:

"The United States officials involved in this case, and especially OSI Director Eli M. Rosenbaum, deserve enormous credit for their unflagging efforts to have Palij removed from the United States. A 14-year long campaign has finally been crowned with success. Trawniki guards do not deserve the privilege of living in the United States and that was finally achieved last night."

Mark Weitzman, the Center's Director of Government Affairs added, "We also want to acknowledge the persistent efforts of the New York Congressional delegation, particularly Congresswoman Kathleen Rice, in whose district Palij lived, for refusing to accept the presence of this war criminal in New York and for insisting that the Federal Government deport him."

The Wiesenthal Center officials also commended US Ambassador Rick Grenell, who made the deportation of Palij a diplomatic priority, and Germany's Foreign Minister, Heiko Maas for making the decision to accept Palij. In doing so, Maas, who has said, "I went into politics because of Auschwitz" has clearly demonstrated a strong acceptance of Germany's responsibility for the genocide of Europe's Jews during World War II.

For additional information please contact the Israel office of the Wiesenthal Center: Tel: 972-2-563-1274 or Tel: 972-50-721-4156, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter, or follow @simonwiesenthal and @EZuroff for news updates sent direct to your Twitter feed.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).

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