Omaha’s Sister Cities Unite for ‘Persona Non Grata’


June 14th, 2018

Omaha, NE—For a long time, there has been a growing special relationship between various cities all over the world—or cities with a special bond for encouraging, trade, diplomacy and tourism. Omaha too has sister cities in several countries, including Germany, Mexico, Lithuania and China. Omaha Sister Cities Association is a local nonprofit dedicated to the global community, hosting cross cultural events and programs.

On Tuesday the 19th, the Association will collaborate with the Institute for Holocaust Education for a film screening of Persona Non Grata (2015), directed by Cellin Gluck, an unlikely story of rescue, which happens joins two of Omaha’s sister communities.

Chiune Sugihara, subject of Persona Non Grata, was Japan’s Consul to Lithuania in 1939 and 1940. After witnessing the rise and advance the Nazi forces in Europe, he organized the rescue of some 6,000 Jewish refugees by issuing transit visas to the Japanese, allowing them to move freely.

Tales of bravery like Sugihara’s are often some of the most endearing and inspiring stories, but from a historical perspective, they’re unfortunately not very common.

Still, stories like Persona Non Grata give audiences a chance the learn about what it takes to make a difference.

The evening will also include a question and answer session conducted by IHE Executive Director Liz Feldstern, Dr. Ari Cohen from UNL, and author Julija Šukys. Also attending, Naoki Ito, Consul General of Japan in Chicago. OSCA and IHE’s screening of Persona Non Grata is at 7:00pm Tuesday June 19th at the Jewish Community Center. For more information, visit

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