Controversy rages over building on a Lithuanian Jewish heritage site

Vilnius, the capital of independent Lithuania, once part of Poland and a Polish-Lithuanian state centuries ago is historically a major center of East European Jewish scholarship and thought. The city is now involved in a controversy on preserving that heritage.

The dispute concerns plans to build a modern conference center on the site of an old Jewish cemetery in Vilnius, where prominent rabbis and other members of a once vibrant community and center of religious study were buried. The burial site has already been…