HUMAN RIGHTS | MEDIA WATCH | CHRISTIAN-JEWISH ISSUES | CEMETERIES & MASS GRAVES | OLD VILNA JEWISH CEMETERY AT PIRAMÓNT | OPPOSITION TO CONVENTION CENTER PROJECT | INTERNATIONAL PETITION
VILNIUS—According to a report by the website Save Vilna that also appeared in the Christian News Journal, the Lithuanian ambassador to the United States, HE Rolandas Kriščiūnas has personally assured the chairman of the U.S. Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee, Jim (James E.) Risch “that there will be no conference centre on the cemetery.” The meeting resulted from months-long diplomacy by Christian Evangelical journalist Dr. Michael J. Harper of InterMountain Christian News, a prominent campaigner against the desecration of Jewish cemeteries. Over the past year, he has passionately represented the cause in Vilnius and Tel Aviv, in addition to his work as a White House correspondent representing Christian media. Together with a delegation of top Lithuanian tradition rabbis in Israel, he spoke eloquently at a videotaped meeting with the Lithuanian ambassador to Tel Aviv.
If this report is accurate, the news would represent a major breakthrough in international efforts to save the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery (and Lithuanian honor) from the degrading spectre of thousands cheering, drinking and flushing surrounded by thousands of Jewish graves including many family members of the Gaon of Vilna. Vilnius native Ruta Bloshtein’s petition today clocked in at 51,353 signatures. Defending History has tracked the saga for years.
Defending History could not immediately confirm the report.