Israel and Poland inch closer to bridging WW2 restitution rift — Analysis
Following a time of degraded diplomatic relationships, the Israeli ambassador submitted his credentials for the Polish president
Poland’s President Andrzej Duda has confirmed that Israeli Ambassador Yacov Livne submitted his credentials on Tuesday. The move comes almost a year since the heads of the diplomatic missions of the two nations were recalled over Poland’s controversial law on restitutions, which denied Jews compensation for property taken from them during World War II.
Duda’s Israeli counterpart, President Isaac Herzog, called the return of the ambassador “an important first step to advancing Israeli-Polish relations” and said he hoped to reciprocate by receiving the credentials of Poland’s new envoy soon.
Duda met with Herzog last week to discuss the matter. After the meeting, the Polish leader declared that he would soon restore ambassadorial ties.
Thank you President @AndrzejDudaFor being an Ambassador @YacovLivneThe credentials of the new Polish ambassador to Israel are an important step towards improving relations between Poland and Israel. I hope to receive the letters of credence of the new Polish ambassador in Israel soon.🇮🇱🇵🇱 https://t.co/d7ZI9q7PWv
— יצחק הרצוג Isaac Herzog (@Isaac_Herzog) July 12, 2022
Duda’s foreign relations adviser Jakub Kumoch commented on the progress on Tuesday, stressing that it did not amount to turning the page on the dispute between the two nations, since Israel still had problems with the law that caused the rift. Instead, they were the presidents “see a chance for normal relations”He added, “I hope!” “that this time we will all be able to take advantage of this opportunity.”
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Tensions between these two countries had grown over the years to the point that envoys were recalled in August 2021. A Polish law, which limited Jews’ rights to seek restitution of property they had lost during Nazi Germany occupation of Poland but not returned following the war was the trigger.
The legislation was referred to by the Israeli government at the time. “anti-Semitic and immoral.”Polish officials described the criticisms as symptomatic. “an increased hatred of Poland and Poles”Israel
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