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National Assembly President Tsetska Tsacheva is to donate to the Auschwitz Museum copies of 17 documents related to the rescue of Bulgarian Jews
January 27, 2010

National Assembly President Tsetska Tsacheva will donate to the museum in Auschwitz copies of 17 documents concerning the rescue of Bulgarian Jews. She is to present the gift on January 27, 2010 during the observance ceremony marking the 65th anniversary since the liberation of the death camps Auschwitz-Birkenau. The Chair of the National Assembly is invited as an honored guest speaker at the special Symposium in Krakow, which is to be held under the motto "Let's remember the past for a peaceful future: United Europe against anti-Semitism, racism and xenophobia".

Among the documents is the protest letter against the deportation of Bulgarian Jews, initiated on March 17, 1943 by the then Deputy Chair of the 25th National Assembly Dimiter Peshev, addressed to Prime Minister Bogdan Filov . The letter was signed by 43 MPs. Among the other documents of the donation is a copy of the signed on February 22, 1943 between the representative of Germany Theodore Deneker and the Bulgarian Commissioner for Jewish Affairs Alexander Belev agreement for the displacement of about 20 000 Jews from Thrace and Macedonia in the eastern areas of Germany.

The gift contains also facsimiles of Sofia Third municipal district residents’ objection letter and a statement of the Governing Council of the Bulgarian Bar Association, addressed to the President of the National Assembly against the bill named “ For the protection of the nation”. The two documents above, as well as the objection letter against the bill, on behalf of the central Jewish Religious Council in Bulgaria, sent to the Member of Parliament Nicholas Sakarov date from October 1940. Among the documents is a letter from Marcus Erenprays, Chief Rabbi of Stockholm, describing the activities undertaken by the Metropolitan of Sofia Stefan for the rescue of Bulgarian Jews and a letter from the International Red Cross representative, Ed. Shapyuiza sent to Eli Eshkenazi, President of the Jewish Research Institute, containing data about efforts to save Jews in Bulgaria in 1943 (dated June 8, 1948).

Facsimile of the Central Jewish Religious Council’s Memorandum regarding the status of Bulgarian Jews during World War II addressed to the Paris Peace Conference in 1947, will also be given to the museum in Auschwitz. The document describes the situation of Jews in Bulgaria before the war and the absence of anti-Semitic manifestations at the time, followed by the restrictive and repressive measures after the adoption of the Law on the Protection of the Nation, on January 23, 1941. It contains the explicit emphasis on the fact that no Bulgarian Jew, residing in the old territories of Bulgaria, was deported. The Memorandum expressed the desire of the Central Jewish Religious Council not to include, in the peace treaty with Bulgaria, any specific measures guaranteeing the rights of Jews and Jewish communities in Bulgaria.

Photos from the Jews deportation from Macedonia, the star of David’s insignia, used to identify Jewish homes and the leaflets distributed against the adoption of the Law for the Protection of the Nation, are also among the documents that will be given as present to the Museum.

The originals of all 17 pieces are kept in the Central State Archive of Bulgaria.
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