Monday, March 3, 2014

Chabad Responds to U.S. Government's Opposition to $14.75 Million Judgment Against Russia Over Jewish Archives

A quick post noting that late last week in the Chabad v. Russian Federation case, Chabad filed its response (here) to the U.S. government's Statement of Interest that opposed Chabad's motion for entry of interim judgment for Russia's failure to transfer custody of the Jewish Library and Archive, known as the Schneerson Collection (background on the case is here and here).

Not surprisingly, Chabad simply notes that the arguments of the U.S. government -- that the Foreign Sovereign Immunity Act does not allow the type of sanctions Chabad is seeking and that an entry of interim judgment would implicate U.S. foreign policy interests -- are the same arguments the U.S. government asserted earlier in the litigation, "arguments that this Court has already considered, addressed, and rejected." Chabad also urges the Court to deny the U.S. government's request that, if the Court enters the interim judgment, it should also require Chabad to provide the Court and the U.S. government with "advance notice of any efforts to take any additional steps to enforce the Court's interim judgment" on the basis that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act already has a notice requirement that is sufficient and that the Government's request is "vague" and overbroad.

Finally, Chabad directly attacks the U.S. government's assertion that "further steps in the litigation will not be productive" to resolving the issue by filing an affirmation by Seth Gerber, counsel for Chabad, describing how the Court's earlier order allowing sanctions led to direct, high-level negotiations with the Russian Government and "secured the direct attention of Russian President Vladimir Putin."

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