Official commemoration of the contribution of Dimitar Peshev and other deputies 
to the saving of the Bulgarian Jews, held in the Bulgarian National Assembly


I have been waiting all my life for the day to dawn when it would be possible to publicise the true story of the rescuing of Bulgaria's Jewry, as well as to express deep gratitude and pay a fitting tribute to the chivalrous Bulgarian parliamentarian Dimitar Peshev

I am one of those Bulgarian Jews who owe their lives to Dimitar Peshev, being the son of the late attorney Yossif Yasharov who defended Dimitar Peshev before the people's court and saved him from a death sentence.  I happen also to be the only Bulgarian Jew in the United States who has for years now, by way of publications in the American press and by historic co-operation with the Holocaust Museum in Washington, been trying to acquaint the American public with the fact that it was Dimitar Peshev's courageous intervention that actually saved all Jews within the erstwhile boundaries of Bulgaria from being put to heinous death in the Nazi extermination camps. 

Although I am not physically among you, my thoughts and emotions will be with you while paying this official tribute to the noble deed and the heroic feat of this prominent Bulgarian. 

I consider this solemn commemorative session of the National Assembly to be a sweeping victory of justice, a posthumous victory of Dimitar Peshev himself, a moral victory of his family and kin and a triumph of those of us, the beholden Bulgarian Jews, who have been trying for years now to convince the world community that it was Dimitar Peshev and not Todor Zhivkov who was particularly deserving of judicious praise for the rescue of Bulgaria's Jewry. 

Dimitar Peshev had to live in dire poverty and isolation, doomed by the communists to a kind of domestic displacement, without a house of his own, disbarred from exercising his profession, deprived of the right to communicate.


We, the rescued Bulgarian Jews, will never forget our revered Dimitar Peshev.  We spent years on end in trying to extend some financial assistance to him from Israel.  Alas, thanks to the communists again, those efforts of ours attained very little success.  Currently, however, even though much too late and even if posthumously, we, Bulgarian Jews, in concert with Jews and non-Jews in a number of countries inclusive of Bulgaria, the United States, Italy and so forth, have been implementing an enterprising initiative designed to set up an international foundation in memory of Dimitar Peshev, whose purpose will be to immortalise the truly heroic, genuinely humanitarian and definitely unprecedented for the period of World War II feat performed by this great Bulgarian.

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