In an effort to convince leaders of four European countries to ratify the amendments to Bonn Accords of 1955, the treaty that concerns the International Tracing Service (ITS) archives located in Bad Arolsen, Germany, administered by the International Committee of the Red Cross, the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and their Descendants have written to the heads of the four countries that have not signed the treaty so far. Those countries are France, Greece, Luxembourg and Italy. These countries have initialed the documents but have not ratified them. Belgium, Germany, Israel, the Netherlands, Poland, Great Britain and the United States have all signed the treaty.

The letters were sent to President Nicholas Sarkozy of France, Prime Minister Jean Claude Junker of Luxembourg, Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis of Greece and Prime Minister Romano Prodi of Italy. The letter, signed by President Sam E. Bloch, Chairman Roman R. Kent and Senior Vice President Max Liebmann, stated in part:

“As you are aware, the final ratification of the treaty by all the signatories will allow all Holocaust survivors and their families, researchers and others to access the files. Please understand that this matter is of URGENT importance to our constituents. They are elderly people who are coming to the end of their difficult lives and seek closure in these documents. Public access is of vital importance to them and to their families. It cannot happen unless the treaty is signed, soon, by your government. We lose tens of our people each day, and their families suffer great anxiety at not being able to see the documents that can tell then where their parents and siblings died.

We respectfully request that you urge your colleagues in the Greek government to approve and fully sign this treaty so as to expedite matters to assist the aging Holocaust survivors in their quest for information and closure.

We thank you in advance for your kind consideration of this matter, and look forward to hearing from your offices in this regard at your earliest convenience. We are hoping that your government will resolve this issue quickly.”