Hitler site turned over to Jewish group
19 November 2003 , BERLIN - The site of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler's chancellery will be turned over the Jewish Claims Conference after Germany's government dropped claims to the property, the finance ministry said Wednesday.
19 November 2003
BERLIN - The site of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler's chancellery will be turned over the Jewish Claims Conference after Germany's government dropped claims to the property, the finance ministry said Wednesday.
A spokesman said the government took the step after legal experts said there were no hopes of pushing through state claims to the property in German courts.
The land, worth at least EUR10 million, will now be turned over to the Jewish Claims Conference.
Hitler's New Reichs Chancellery was built according to plans of chief Nazi architect Albert Speer in 1938 on a site in central Berlin seized from the German-Jewish Wertheim family which owned major department stores.
In 1945 Hitler committed suicide in a bunker near the chancellery rather than face capture by the Soviet Red Army. The badly damaged building was torn down and the stone used by Moscow for monuments to its soldiers in Berlin.
Brown chancellery marble can still be seen in several subway stations in Berlin's Mitte district where it was installed after the war.
The Jewish Claims Conference is the main organisation which works to secure compensation and restitution for survivors of the Holocaust and heirs to which is has paid over USD50 billion.
Set up in 1951, the Claims Conference works in partnership with Israel and has negotiated payments from Germany, Austria, other governments as well as from industry. It also recovers unclaimed German Jewish property.
Subject: German news