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Jews Are Being Ordered to Register in Russian-Controlled Ukraine [Updated]

Very scary, very sad news out of the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk, which has been taken over by pro-Russian militants. Reports are saying that Jews are being forced to register with their government, provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee “or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated.” The information was printed on leaflets and distributed to the city’s synagogue, all bearing the name of Denis Pushilin, who’s styling himself as the chairman of Donetsk’s interim (maybe) government. The leaflet said the registration was necessitated by leaders in the local Jewish community who supported Stepan Bandera, who fought for Ukrainian independence at the end of World War II. “We don’t know if these notifications were distributed by pro-Russian activists or someone else, but it’s serious that it exists,” Olga Reznikova, a 32-year-old Jewish resident of Donetsk, told USA Today. “The text reminds of the fascists in 1941” …

Update: Pushilin has denied any connection with the flyers. Whether they were distributed by a rogue faction of his government, a pro-Russia splinter group or someone else altogether remains unclear. Secretary of State John Kerry says that his department is taking the leaflets seriously, saying “In the year 2014, after all of the miles traveled and all of the journey of history, this is not just intolerable—it’s grotesque. It is beyond unacceptable.”

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