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Press Information published by the International Auschwitz Committee


Each one of the 29 pending proceedings involving Nazi perpetrators in Germany leads to greater justice. But the statement by the regional court in Wuppertal is poor testimony

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According to the programme Panorama, there are currently 29 pending proceedings involving Nazi perpetrators. During a stay at the Auschwitz Memorial Christoph Heubner, the Executive Vice President of the International Auschwitz Committee commented on the situation:

"For Holocaust survivors, the ongoing and largely deliberately neglected legal processes against Nazi crimes remains a constant scandal and source of pain that will accompany them for the rest of their lives in view of their murdered family members.

A minimal number of the Nazi perpetrators in the German concentration and extermination camps have ever seen a German courthouse from the inside. This situation has not been altered by the ground-breaking proceedings of recent years in Lüneburg and Detmold, and the 29 still pending proceedings in Germany researched and reported by the programme Panorama. Despite this, the survivors of the camps feel that each one of these proceedings is an important step towards some small amount of justice for them and their murdered family members.

But the regional court in Wuppertal, before which a 94-year-old man is due to face charges of involvement in Nazi crimes, has now stated that ‘the chamber is facing a continuing high load of arrests which must be treated with priority’. Because of this the chamber has not yet been able to decide whether to actually introduce proceedings. Seen against the background of legal approaches to pursuing Nazi crimes in Germany, and in view of the Holocaust survivors’ advanced age, the survivors feel this is nothing less than cynical and demeaning."


For further Information

Christoph Heubner

Executive Vice President
International Auschwitz Committee
Phone ++ 49 (0)30 26 39 26 81