Peres attends opening of Latvia museum honoring WWII Jew rescuers
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Peres attends opening of Latvia museum honoring WWII Jew rescuers

Museum designed to give visitors a claustrophobic feeling, imitating victims' life in an underground pit

Israeli President Shimon Peres and Latvian President Andris Berzins at the opening of the Zanis Lipke Memorial Museum in Riga, Latvia on Tuesday, July 30 (photo credit: Moshe Milner/GPO/Flash90)
Israeli President Shimon Peres and Latvian President Andris Berzins at the opening of the Zanis Lipke Memorial Museum in Riga, Latvia on Tuesday, July 30 (photo credit: Moshe Milner/GPO/Flash90)

RIGA, Latvia (AP) — President Shimon Peres has taken part in the ceremony to open a museum honoring a couple who saved some 50 Jews from extermination in Nazi-occupied Latvia.

The museum in downtown Riga, Latvia’s capital, is located next to the property once owned by Zanis Lipke, a port worker who together with his wife hid Jews in an underground pit measuring some 9 square meters (90 square feet).

The three-story museum of dark gray wood resembles an overturned ship and is designed to give visitors a claustrophobic sense of life in a tiny bunker.

Peres took part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday with his Latvian counterpart, Andris Berzins.

In 1966, Yad Vashem, an Israel-based center for studying the Holocaust, recognized Zanis and Johana Lipke as Righteous Among the Nations for their saving of Jews.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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