Rabbi Yechiel Levitansky, the rav of the Sumy Jewish community decried the destruction of chumashim and siddurim by Ukrainian customs officials. The 173 seforim were sent by the Russian community to assist the Jews in Sumy, who badly needed the extra seforim in their area.
According to a report in the Fakty newspaper, the courier delivering the books lacked the funds to pay the customs charge at the border, compelling him to leave them until he could return with the payment. He then announced he would not be returning and was abandoning the seforim. The customs officials decided to sell them, succeeding in selling one. For reasons that remain unclear, they then decided to destroy the remainder.
Rav Levitansky explained the seforim were very important, adding that on a regular Shabbos, he usually gets about 40 mispalalim and they do not have enough seforim to go around, compelling mispalalim to share with one another.
(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)