Lithuania Reinstates Event to Honor Nazi Collaborator

Lithuanian government is financing the reburial of the “prime minister” of the 1941 Nazi puppet government as well as four days of events honoring him.

The Lithuanian Parliament published on Wednesday an updated schedule of events in honor of the repatriation to Lithuania of the remains of Juozas Ambrazevičius, the “prime minister” of the 1941 Nazi puppet government.

One of the scheduled events, a conference earlier slated for Vytautas Magnus University in Kowno, was moved to “venue to be announced” after the university’s rector decided to call off the event, following a Haaretz report, explaining he wished to “save the honor” of the institution and criticizing the nation's parliament.

Nevertheless, two professors from the same university are among the speakers at the new event honoring Ambrazevičius.

In a controversial move, causing anguish among Holocaust survivors, Lithuania's Jewish community and the Association of Lithuanian Jews in Israel, the remains of Ambrazevicius, who died almost 40 years ago in the United States, will be reinterred from Connecticut to the Church of the Resurrection in Kaunas. En route, he will be honored in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, in a ceremony slated for Thursday.

The Lithuanian government is financing the transatlantic reburial and four days of events honoring the Nazi collaborator. Wednesday’s parliamentary press release confirmed that the reburial mass will be conducted by the archbishop metropolitan, Sigitas Tamkevičius, who recently published effusive praise for him.

The documents signed by Ambrazevičius in his capacity as “prime minister” of the 1941 “provisional government” include the June 27, 1941 statement calling for all means against the Jews but asking that executions not be public; the June 30, 1941 order for a concentration camp for Jews to be set up; and the July 7, 1941 order for all the Jews of Kaunas to be forcibly relocated into a ghetto within four weeks. They were all revealed by the website.