QCOSTARICA – Despite the call by the Simon Wiesenthal Center directed the Costa Rican Minister of Justice, Cecilia Sanchez Romero, to a San Pedro (San José) shop selling Nazi objects, Hitler hero pins, Holocaust denial books and concentration camp prisoners’ clothing, the Ministerio de Justicia y Paz has no legal powers to open investigations and order the closure.
The Center says “materials on sale offend the memory of Hitler’s victims and provoke violence against Jewish communities throughout Latin America”.
The letter, signed by the Center’s Director of International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels and Dr. Ariel Gelblung, its Representative for Latin America, called for an investigation into the shop owner, the suppliers, the clients and ties to other Nazi groups across Latin America.
Samuels argued, “The shop could be closed under Organization of American States (OAS) provisions.”
“Materials on sale offend the memory of Hitler’s victims and provoke violence against Jewish communities throughout Latin America”, added Gelblung
“Costa Rica’s long support for Israel and its well-established Jewish community require the immediate removal of this anti-Semitic emporium,” concluded SWC officials.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).
In recent years the center became a major source of complaint of anti-Semitic activities worldwide.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center has offices in Jerusalem, New York, Miami, Toronto and Paris.
Editor’s note: Unlike in the U.S., in Costa Rica the Ministry of Justice and Peace (Ministerio de Justicia y Paz) administers only the prison system and parole of inmates.