Israel asks Germany to return art to Jewish hands
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Israel asks Germany to return art to Jewish hands

Deputy foreign minister requests to join investigation into the roughly 1,400 artworks found in apartment of a collector

Otto Griebel's 'Kind am Tisch' ('Child at a Table'), among the seized works of art that were in the possession of Cornelius Gurlitt. (photo credit: AP/Staatsanwaltschaft Augsburg)
Otto Griebel's 'Kind am Tisch' ('Child at a Table'), among the seized works of art that were in the possession of Cornelius Gurlitt. (photo credit: AP/Staatsanwaltschaft Augsburg)

Israel’s deputy foreign minister urged Germany Sunday to give any Jewish-owned art from a trove discovered in Munich to Jewish or Israeli museums if heirs are not found.

Ze’ev Elkin said Israel has requested to join the German investigation into the roughly 1,400 artworks found in the apartment of a reclusive Munich collector last year.

German prosecutors are checking whether up to 590 works were seized by Nazis. Several heirs of Jewish collectors persecuted by the Nazis have already made claim to individual artworks in the collection.

The collector says he inherited the works from his father, an art dealer commissioned by the Nazis.

Elkin said Israel suggested Germany give any Jewish-owned art with no locatable heirs to an institution like the Israel Museum in Jerusalem or a Jewish museum in Germany.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press

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