Simonas Gurevičius who was elected to head the Vilnius Jewish Community in May seeks invalidation of the election for the leader of the Jewish Community of Lithuania held on the same month, which were victorious for Faina Kukliansky. Kukliansky won a second four-year term in office.
Kukliansky, in her turn, protests against Gurevičius’ election as the leader of Vilnius Jews.
Gurevičius, Kukliansky’s opponent in the election for top leader of the Jewish Community of Lithuania in the May 28 election, says that the new election procedures approved just a month before the election is illegal and runs counter to the bylaws of the Jewish Community of Lithuania, which stipulate regional representation.
In his words, the new election procedures diminished the power of regional Jewish organizations and boosted Kukliansky’s chances to be re-elected.
On May 29, a Vilnius court ruled to suspend the Lithuanian Jewish Community’s election procedures introduced in April. The court barred the community from revising its bylaws on July 21 to keep it from changing the disputed chapter.
Gurevičius wants the Jewish Community of Lithuania to hold new elections.
Gurevičius was elected as the leader of the Jewish Community of Vilnius on May 24, saying he had not received the community’s documents and property after the election.
Kukliansky told BNS that Gurevičius would not receive documents and assets of the Vilnius Jewish community, as the legitimacy of the election was still being examined in court.
Some members of the Jewish Community of Vilnius, including Kukliansky, have challenged the election of Gurevičius, dismissing it as illegal due to procedural violations.
According to the latest census of 2011, Lithuania’s Jewish population counts about 3,000 members.