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BBC – The businessman exiled for being Jewish

When Adam Ringer was forcibly removed from Poland in 1968 simply because he was Jewish, he didn’t think he’d ever be able to return to his homeland.


Adam Ringer
Image caption, Adam Ringer was finally able to return to Poland in 1989 when the communist government fell

It was back in 1968 that Mr Ringer, 19 at the time, was made to renounce his Polish citizenship and kicked out of the country, during one of communism’s darker episodes.

Just 23 years after the Holocaust, Poland’s surviving Jewish population was targeted by an anti-Semitic purge officially sanctioned by the country’s then communist authorities.

Branded an “anti-Zionist” campaign, Polish Jews were stripped of their jobs and deported, because of the government’s – and the wider Soviet Bloc’s – growing hostility towards Israel at the time.

An estimated 14,000 Poles of Jewish faith or ancestry were forced to leave the country, after each being given a document that stated that its holder was stateless and had no right to ever return to Poland.

Looking back, Mr Ringer says: “Many of my colleagues were arrested… my father was expelled from his job. We were all in shock and feared for the worst.

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