Protecting Judaica and Extending the Registration of Torahs to Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union

The Claims Conference/WJRO has encouraged, along with several other organizations, the registration of Torah scrolls in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Such registration can establish provenance, lessen theft and black market activity, and eventually serve as a basis to discuss restitution of Torah scrolls currently in the hands of the various governments. While the Claims Conference/WJRO does not favor any particular registration system, the Universal Torah Registry (UTR) appeared to be particularly suited to the countries in question. The Universal Torah Registry, an independent organization founded by the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, provided a method that is both secure and acceptable under Jewish law to identify and register Torah scrolls.

Registration is different from repair of Torah scrolls. The Claims Conference has supported the repair of Romanian Torah scrolls by Menora, the Authority for the Repatriation of Diaspora Synagogues, and their relocation to Israel.