In an important address to the visiting delegation of sixty leaders of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Spanish Minister of Justice, Alberto Ruiz Gallardon, declared the expulsion of Jews from Spain five centuries ago an "historic" tragedy that never should have taken place and a"fatal" loss for all of Spain. The recent legislation granting Spanish citizenship to Jews of Sephardic ancestry is backed by all political parties as well as the vast majority of of Spanish people, he said. He spoke out forcefully against Holocaust denial and emphasized the imperative to act against all discrimination and rising xenophobia. By visiting Israel as he did, he added, one overcomes the biases against Israel that are widely held in Europe. The delegation is visiting Spain in advance of its annual Israel Leadership Mission.
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