Germany’s Shoah compensation totals EUR 63bn
28 August 2006
BERLIN – The German state has paid out about 63 billion euros (80.6 billion dollars) in compensation for the Holocaust since 1949, the government said Monday.
Six million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust carried out under Nazi Germany during Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich from 1933 to 1945.
However the German government said it saw no reason to pay compensation to Italians held prisoner during the Second World War who were used for forced labour.
Italians soldiers interned by Nazi Germany from 1943 after the Italian government surrendered to the Allies – and held until Nazi Germany capitulated in 1945 – are not eligible for compensation from a fund for slave labourers, said the government.
A compensation package for Nazi era slave labourers, funded half by the German state and half by private industry, only covers civilian slave labourers – not soldiers, said the government.
In a statement to parliament, the government said about 4,150 former Italian prisoners of war have applied for compensation.
The number of Italians held prisoner under the Nazis who are still alive is unclear, said the statement.
Lawyers representing former prisoners said about 150,000 former Italian military slave labourers were still alive in 2004. But a study by Italian historians estimated only 58,000 were still alive back in 1999, the government said.
DPA with Expatica
Subject: German news