Gens After His Appointment
as Vilna Ghetto Leader
(July 15, 1942)
By Order of the Gebietskommissar of Vilna of July
12, 1942, I have assumed full responsibility for the ghetto as
Representative of the Ghetto and Chief of Police.
The basis of existence in the ghetto is work,
discipline and order. Every resident of the ghetto who is capable of
work is a pillar on which our existence rests.
There is no room among us for those who hate work and in
devious ways engage in crime. In the belief that all the inmates of the
ghetto will understand me, I have given orders to free all persons now
under arrest in the ghetto. I hereby proclaim a general amnesty, in this
way permitting the criminals of yesterday to return to better ways, in the
understanding that this is in their own interest. But let no one doubt that
in time of need I will not hesitate to use stringent methods in the
struggle against criminal elements wherever they may appear.
I believe that all inmates of the ghetto without
exception will support this declaration and have given the following
1. All charges of administrative character will be
cancelled and crimes committed within the ghetto by occupants of the ghetto
up to 7 p.m. on July 13, 1942, will be pardoned.
2. All investigations and court procedures will be
closed with regard to offenses referred to under Para. 1, regardless of the
stage reached in the investigation.
3. Persons serving prison sentences with respect to
offenses under Para. 1 will be released on the basis of my decision.
4. Fines imposed, but not yet collected, with respect to
offenses under Para. 1, are herewith cancelled.
5. The orders set out under Paras. 1-4 do not apply to
persons who committed the following offenses:
b) Grievous or serious personal injury;
c) Insulting or physically attacking a policeman
carrying out his official duties, or in connection with these duties;
d) Offenses against the authorities;
e) Disciplinary offenses (on the part of officials of
the ghetto management or ghetto police).
6. Persons in illegal possession of permits or Bread
Cards will benefit from the amnesty if they return the illegal permits or
Bread Cards voluntarily by 7 p.m. on July 28, 1942. They should be returned
to the appropriate Police Station in the Registration Office or to the
7. The closing of investigation or court procedures and
the remission of sentences already imposed, on the basis of this amnesty,
do not release a person from an order to pay compensation either to
individuals or to the ghetto management.
8. The prison sentences or fines cancelled by this
amnesty can be reactivated by a court order or other appropriate authority
in the event of the offender committing any other offense, or failing to
obey instructions, or showing lack of discipline at his place of work or
when he is sent to work, within three months of the date of publication of
Vilna Ghetto, July 15, 1942
Representative of the Ghetto and Chief of Police
Moreshet Archives, D. 1.352.