Shanghai Seeks UNESCO Recognition for WWII Jewish Neighborhood

About 20,000 Jews who fled the Nazis used to live in Shanghai during WWII; now the city wants their district to be added to the Memory of the World Register.

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This vintage photograph, circa 1940, shows Jewish refugees arriving in Shanghai, then under Japanese occupation.
This vintage photograph, circa 1940, shows Jewish refugees arriving in Shanghai, then under Japanese occupation.Credit: AP
JTA
JTA

Shanghai is applying to have the neighborhood that sheltered Jewish refugees during WWII added to the UNESCO Memory of the World Register.

Some 20,000 Jewish refugees who fled the Nazis lived in Shanghai, in the Tilanqiao area of Hongkou District, according to Xinhua news service.

The Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum is working with the Hongkou district government to complete the application.

As part of the application, the city completed the collecting of the refugee list, data bank, literary, video and audio material.

Shanghai also has announced plans to rebuild a cafe where Jewish refugees gathered during their time in the city.

The Wiener Cafe Restaurant, opened in 1939, will be rebuilt using its original blueprints opposite the Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum.

It was demolished in 2009 to expand the city subway system.

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