Euroasian Jewish News
Hundreds of Jewish headstones uncovered in Ukraine
Last month hundreds of Jewish headstones were found at a military base near Chernivtsi in southwestern Ukraine during renovations, the Censor news website reported.
The headstones were discovered under a barrack’s wooden floor, according to the report. They had been removed from a nearby cemetery in the 1940s or 1950s, under communism. Rabbi Menachem Glisnshtain, a Chabad emissary serving in the Chernivtsi region, received a call from a Ukrainian army officer informing him about the find.
Glisnshtain took possession of the headstones for the local Jewish community, according to the report.
About a quarter of all Jewish cemeteries in Eastern Europe were destroyed during the Nazi and Soviet periods, according to Rabbi Isaac Schapira, the Israel-based founder and chairman of the board of the European Jewish Cemeteries Initiative, or ESJF. Eastern Europe has about 10,000 Jewish cemeteries, according to ESJF.
The bulk of the damage to Jewish cemeteries happened during World War II and under communism. But they are still being degraded today due to unregulated construction and vandalism.