European Jewish Congress
The European Jewish Congress (EJC) is one of the most influential international public associations and a large secular organisation representing more than 2.5 million of Jews throughout Europe. The EJC is an umbrella organisation for 42 national Jewish communities on this continent.
The primary mission of the EJC, which is deeply involved in the integration processes in Europe, is to promote European democracy based on good relations between neighbours, mutual understanding and tolerance.
The EJC maintains close cooperation with European governments, leading international institutions and European integration associations, including the United Nations, European Union, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe. EJC has a participatory status with the Council of Europe.
The EJC’s goal is to address the most pressing issues faced by today’s world, i.e. protecting human rights, fighting xenophobia and anti-Semitism, promoting interfaith dialogue, implementing cultural and educational programmes, and remembering the Holocaust and other tragedies that claimed millions of human lives throughout the world.
To meet these goals, the EJC has initiated and organised several large international projects, in particular the Let My People Live! international forums. The first forum of the series was held in Krakow in January 2005 to commemorate 60 years since liberation of Auschwitz; the second forum took place in Kiev in September 2006 to mark 65 years since the Babi Yar tragedy. The forums were widely supported by leading international organisations, including the Council of Europe and the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly, as well as senior politicians from many countries, including Russia, the United States, Germany, Israel, Poland and Ukraine. The forum’s participants adopted the World Holocaust Forum Declaration welcoming efforts to preserve the memory of victims of World War II, the Holocaust and its lessons for future generations. The forum’s concept was followed up with European Day of Tolerance initiative. The next World Holocaust Forum is planned to be held in New York in 2010.
Another important issue on the EJC’s agenda is preventing one of today’s most dangerous threats, that of nuclear terrorism. The EJC was a co-organiser of the International Conference on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe, which took place in Luxembourg this May and brought together a unique team of more than 50 experts in nuclear non-proliferation from 14 countries, led by Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Mohammed ElBaradei. Taking into account the level of participants, the conference was the largest and most authoritative gathering to discuss issues of nuclear safety within the past decade.
The EJC’s head office is located in Paris, with branches operating in Berlin, Brussels, Budapest and Strasburg.
Viatcheslav Moshe Kantor was elected President of the European Jewish Congress in June 2007. Re-elected in December 2008 and then in November 2012 for a 4-year term. Since 2004 to his election as EJC President, he was Chairman of the EJC Board of Governors.
On October 14, 2009 the new EJC European Office was officially opened in Brussels, Belgium. The ceremony was attended by Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, Jerzy Buzek, President of the European Parliament, Jacques Barrot, Vice President of the European Commission, Uzi Landau, Minister of National Infrastructure of Israel, Members of the European Parliament, Members of the Belgian Government, Presidents of the Jewish Communities of Europe. President of the Belgian Senate Armand de Decker bestowed the Order of Leopold on EJC President Viatcheslav Moshe Kantor for his outstanding social efforts and promoting of tolerance in Europe.
EJC website - www.eurojewcong.org