US judge orders Russia to preserve Jewish texts

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A federal judge ordered Russia on Thursday to preserve sacred religious documents that members of a Hasidic Jewish movement fear could be headed to the black market.

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth issued a restraining order telling Russia to protect the documents and return any that may already have been removed from the Russian State Military Archives.

The order comes in a lawsuit filed by members of Chabad-Lubavitch, which follows the teachings of Eastern European rabbis and emphasizes the study of the Torah. The group is suing Russia in U.S. court to recover thousands of manuscripts, prayers, lectures and philosophical discourses by leading rabbis dating back to the 18th century.

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