Address by the President of the Republic Mr. Jacques Chirac
on the occasion of the 190th Anniversary of the Great Sanhedrin
2 March 1997
Jacques Chirac, President of the French Republic
The Great Sanhedrin took place in 1806, when the representatives of the Jewish community in France met for the first time at the invitation of Emperor Napoleon I. This event marked the final act in the process of the emancipation of the Jews. This speech by President Chirac was delivered in commemoration of the Great Sanhedrin, and provides a historical and political overview of the rights and history of citizenship of the Jews in France since the 18th century.
Of particular interest is Chircac's repeated statement that the French government was responsible for the arrest, deportation and death of thousands of Jews and his commitment to finding out, through the research of the Mattéoli Commission, what became of the property confiscated from French Jews.
Chirac, Jacques. Address By the President of the Republic on the Occasion of the 190th Anniversary of the Great Sanhedrin. 2 March 1997, Paris. <http://www.info-france-usa.org/news/statmnts/1998/wchea/sanhe.asp> accessed 16 July 2002.
A transcript of this statement can be found on the web page for the Embassy of France in the USA, <http://www.info-france-usa.org/news/statmnts/1998/wchea/sanhe.asp> accessed 16 July 2002.