Centrul de Apel Republic of Moldova official page Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration banner Turism în Moldova Investiţii în Moldova E-services Registru Chamber

Embassy address:
38 Rembrandt St.,
Tel Aviv, 64045

Phone: +972-3-5231000
Fax: +972-3-5233000

E-mail: tel-aviv@mfa.gov.md

Jewish Community

The Republic Moldova is a poly-ethnic state, which pays special attention to the development of cultural and linguistic relations, and also to the traditions of all ethnics groups of Moldova. In this plan it is worthwhile to note the attention shown for the citizens of Jewish origin, which benefits of the warm, friendly relations between Moldova and Israel, and has a special significance for the advance of bilateral relations.

Political changes in the USSR at the end of 1980’s have coincided with a revival of ethnic minority’s activities. At that time Jewish cultural societies were organized in the main cities of Moldova. In 1991, a Decree regarding the Development of Jewish Culture and Needs of the Jewish Population (first and unique in the FSU) was signed by the President of Moldova.

Moldovan Government has repeatedly emphasized that protecting national minorities based on European standards is necessary for stability, democratic security and peace within the country. The leadership of the country pays enormous attention to interethnic harmony also by development of the legal framework. Thus, Moldova’s Parliament adopted the resolution on Ratification of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities (Parliament Resolution from October 22, 1996), which has become a main source for the further development of a legal base in the field of inter-ethnic relations.

Ratification of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (Parliament Resolution from July 24, 1997) was the next step in improving Moldova’s legislation. The fundamental regulatory legal act, which finally granted legal status to national minorities, was signed into law on July 19, 2001, “Law on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National Minorities, and Legal Status of their Organizations”. In compliance with the Law, any form of national origin discrimination is prohibited.

On January 1, 2004 the Concept of National Policy of the Republic of Moldova came into force by which Moldova declared itself a multicultural state. In the regulation, Jews are considered a part of the Republic’s population. So, the concept reads: “The Moldavians, the state based nationality, together with representatives of other ethnic groups – Ukrainians, Russians, Gagauz, Bulgarians, Jews, Romanians, Belarusians, gypsies, Poles and others – constitute the Moldavian public for which the country is their common native land” (the “Official Monitor” № 1-5 from January 1, 2004). This is the first time in Moldova’s modern legislative history when Jews have been considered a part of the nation.

The Law on Languages in the Territory of the Republic of Moldova acknowledged the use of Hebrew and Yiddish, along with other languages, with the purpose to satisfy the national and cultural needs of Jews. In 2001 the state guaranteed Jews preschool education, primary, secondary (general and professional), higher, and post-university Hebrew and Yiddish language education, which was a logical continuation of the aforementioned regulatory legal acts.

The regulation issued by the Moldovan Government on January 23, 2002, which stipulates the activities of the Interethnic Relations Bureau, specifies that Moldova carries out a policy prohibiting ethnic and linguistic discrimination and providing equal rights to all ethnic groups residing in the Republic. And the recognition of ethno-cultural diversity and interethnic peace as the main property of the people is identified as a priority for the state.

Democratic norms of liberty also exist with regard to religion. The Moldovan Law on Cults (March 24, 1992) says that nobody can be prosecuted for religious beliefs or their absence.

The current Government of Moldova is consistent in its attention to the Jewish community and pays special attention to training tolerance and fight the anti-Semitism in the national plan, in particular within the framework of school process and different cultural and educational measures. Adequate consideration is paid to the history of the Holocaust to ensure that similar humanitarian catastrophes will never happen.

No policy of anti-Semitism exists at the state level; Moldova has no political parties whose programs or propaganda materials would contain anti-Semitic ideas.

Moldova participated in many international forums on anti-Semitism. The Jewish Congress of the Republic of Moldova in cooperation with the Association of Jewish Organizations and Communities of the Republic of Moldova published 2000 copies of the Holocaust history schoolbook in the Russian and Moldovan languages. The edition is expected to educate tolerance in relation to other nations among youth. The Ministry of Education of Moldova supported the Jewish organization’s initiative. The course on Holocaust is currently included in Moldovan schools curricula.

During construction works in a Chisinau suburbs was revealed a mass grave related to Holocaust, the community alerted the Government, which halted the construction and erected a memorial. In 1999, a Holocaust memorial in the capital was installed and is located near the national government offices in Chisinau.

April 2003 marked centennial since the Kishinev pogrom, which shocked the Jewish world. Commemorations of this tragic event were held in the capital of Moldova at the state level. Avigdor Liberman, Minister of Transportation, represented the Government of Israel at the ceremony. Vladimir Voronin, President of the Republic, and other officials took part in the activities to commemorate the pogrom. On official manifestation held on that sad occasion, President Voronin unveiled a renovated and enlarged monument commemorating the Chisinau Pogrom of 1903. Additionally, the postal authorities of Moldova and Israel have issued a special memorial stamps to commemorate the centennial of the Pogrom, also commemoration medals were issued.

Moldova has made some important steps, including officially recognizing the facts of the Holocaust. President Voronin has condemned repeatedly anti-Semitism in speeches to Jewish audiences and explicitly condemned historical denial of Holocaust in his speech on the occasion of Victory Day, 9 May 2005.

In 2005 the book “Holocaust: Pages of History”, (the author, Moldovan historian Sergeii Nazaria) on Antonescu’s role in the killing of Jews during the Holocaust, was published. This was the first time that a history book on the Holocaust in Moldova became available to the large public in independent Moldova. Practically every school of the Republic received this fundamental monograph.

The Information and Security Service of the Republic of Moldova donated the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum a list of persons involved in mass prosecutions of Jews in Moldova during the Second World War. It includes copies of investigation and trial documents from crimes committed against civilians in Moldova during the Second World War (the list contains 61 surnames) and passed some other materials on this issue to international Jewish organizations. As well archive materials of the Russian secret police concerning the pogrom in Kishinev in 1903 were passed to Israel.

Today in Moldova, there are memorial complexes and monuments erected all over the Republic to commemorate black pages in the history of the Jewish Community of Moldova – Pogroms and Holocaust.