ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 148

search

German MPs back memorial for Jehovah’s Witnesses persecuted and killed by Nazis

Parliament calls on government to build monument in Berlin’s Tiergarten Park; foundation running existing sites says 1,700 followers of religion died under Third Reich

People walk through the Tiergarten Park, in Berlin, Germany, where a new memorial commemorating Jehovah's Witness victims of the Nazis is set to be built, February 25, 2021. (STEFANIE LOOS/AFP)
People walk through the Tiergarten Park, in Berlin, Germany, where a new memorial commemorating Jehovah's Witness victims of the Nazis is set to be built, February 25, 2021. (STEFANIE LOOS/AFP)

BERLIN, Germany — The German parliament has approved the construction of a memorial in Berlin to the Jehovah’s Witnesses persecuted under the Nazis, a plan the country’s culture minister hopes will help end their status as “forgotten victims.”

On Thursday evening, lawmakers backed a motion formally calling on the government to support the construction of the memorial in the capital’s central Tiergarten Park.

It will follow memorials already constructed in Berlin over the past two decades to Jewish, gay, Sinti and Roma, and disabled people murdered by the Nazis.

Lawmakers also have mandated a project to build a memorial to the Polish victims of World War II.

The foundation that oversees the existing memorials, which also will be in charge of the one for Jehovah’s Witnesses, pointed to the Christian denomination’s resistance from the start of the Nazi regime, and to the help it gave other persecuted groups, noting that its members refused to give the Hitler salute or join state organizations such as the Hitler Youth. It was banned shortly after the Nazis came to power in 1933.

Members were persecuted, sent to concentration camps, and killed. The foundation said that at least 1,700 Jehovah’s Witnesses died as a result of Nazi rule.

“They were persecuted, tormented, locked up and murdered,” Culture Minister Claudia Roth said, according to the German news agency dpa. The aim of the planned memorial is to ensure “that they will no longer be forgotten victims of Nazism,” she added.

read more:
Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed
image
Register for free
and continue reading
Registering also lets you comment on articles and helps us improve your experience. It takes just a few seconds.
Already registered? Enter your email to sign in.
Please use the following structure: example@domain.com
Or Continue with
By registering you agree to the terms and conditions. Once registered, you’ll receive our Daily Edition email for free.
Register to continue
Or Continue with
Log in to continue
Sign in or Register
Or Continue with
check your email
Check your email
We sent an email to you at .
It has a link that will sign you in.