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Magyar Zsidók Központi Tanácsa

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Magyar Zsidók Központi Tanácsa

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The Central Council of Hungarian Jews (Jewish Council) was a body of Jewish representatives created by the Nazis and their Hungarian collaborators in 1944 to carry out the restrictive and genocidal measures against the Jews. On paper all Hungarian Jews were supervised by the Jewish Council, but its sphere of competence was actually limited almost exclusively to Budapest. The name and legal status of the Council changed in the course of its existence. Between March 21 and April 22, 1944 it was called the “Central Council of the Hungarian Jews” and it was under the “legal” supervision of the German authorities. Between April 22, 1944 and January 18, 1945 its official name was the “Interim Executive Board of the Association of Jews in Hungary” and was under the official purview of the Hungarian government. The administrative structure of the Council was based on and entwined with that of the Pest Israelite Congregation and the National Office of Hungarian Israelites (the umbrella organization of the Neologue Jewish communities). These two did not cease to exist with the creation of the Council, but carried on with their work, therefore practically three parallel administrations operated – overlapping and complementing each other at the same time. The head of all three was the same person: Samu Stern. As the genocidal steps by the Hungarian and German authorities progressed (disenfranchisement, plunder, ghettoization, deportation), the Council’s various offices and departments were in constant reorganization between March 1944 and January 1945.


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