No refugees housed a former Nazi camp Buchenwald - World Jewish Congress

No refugees housed a former Nazi camp Buchenwald

No refugees housed a former Nazi camp Buchenwald


Media reports that refugees arriving in Germany are being housed on the site of the former Nazi concentration camp Buchenwald have turned out to be inaccurate.

Last week, the British newspaper 'Daily Mail' claimed that authorities were using a former building at Buchenwald, near Weimar, to house more than 20 people. However, the site in question was the former Nazi camp in Schwerte, near Dortmund, around 350 kilometers from Buchenwald.

Schwerte was one of 137 satellite camps of Buchenwald. Operating as a Nazi weapons factory from 1944 to 1945 it had around 700 inmates who were deployed as forced laborers.

At Buchenwald, from its opening in July 1937 to its liberation in April 1945, around 250,000 prisoners were held, and an estimated 56,000 people were murdered, including political prisoners, people dubbed "asocial" by the Nazis, Soviet prisoners of war, Sinti and Roma, and approximately 11,000 Jews. Buchenwald today operates as a museum and memorial visited by more than 500,000 people every year.

The site of the former Schwerte satellite camp also has a memorial. In one building on the grounds, refugees have been housed in buildings constructed after World War II. The buildings have reportedly also been used as artist studios and as a kindergarden.

Germany is currently accommodating an estimated one million refugees mainly of Middle Eastern origin and experiencing a shortage in housing due to the large influx of people.