A response by Arkady Suharenko, Chairman, Jewish Community of Latvia
SWC director Efraim Zuroff who visited Riga launched his project "Operation:
We certainly agree that if there are unknown Nazis somewhere we support the project,
but I do not agree with a lot of ZurofPs statements and the
manner in which he is operating. This method has no basis.
Such activity could lead to an outburst of anti-Semitism.
All this could harm the positive processes affecting the
Jewish community in Latvia,
The Jewish community in Riga supports the search for Nazi war criminals who
have still not been punished. We think that it is important not only to punish
them, but also in order mat such a tragedy will not recur in the future.
I would like attention also to be paid to the enormous work
being done by the President of Latvia and the government
to develop relations with the Jewish
community. Thanks to this policy, a climate of normalcy has been created. But
the relations between nations and ethnic groups are a very delicate fabric.
The community is doing everything to cooperate with the country and wilh the
President in order to prevent any activity which could cause an outbreak of
anti-Semitism and that is exactly what could be caused by the completion of
ZurofFs project. But if the Simon Wiesenthal Center will present specific information
on Nazi war criminals in Latvia, 1 am ready to be the liaison to bring this
information to the government and to the President to ensure that
the murderers will be punished because every criminal who raised his hand against
an innocent victim must remember all his life that he cannot escape punishment.