PM: Files on Channel Island Jews murdered by Nazis moved to ‘archives’
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PM: Files on Channel Island Jews murdered by Nazis moved to ‘archives’

Boris Johnson responded to Hendon's Matthew Offord's call for the documents to be 'released'

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Boris Johnson has said crucial documents which could help establish how many Jews were amongst those murdered by the Nazis during the occupation of the Channel Islands “have been transferred to the National Archives.”
Responding to a question put to him by the Hendon MP Matthew Offord, the Prime Minister said “we must never forget those who suffered during the occupation of the Channel Islands between 1940 and 1945.”
At Prime Ministers Questions, Offord had described the “subject of Jewish burial” as a “sensitive and important issue to my constituents, and as such to me.”
He added that in January 1942 the Nazis had built two concentration camps “on British soil on the isle of Alderney.”
Describing the “appalling conditions with multiple deaths,” Offord noted there are just 397 recorded graves in Alderney.
This was he added just six per cent of the 6000 people who had been interned.
A British delegation had undertaken an inquiry into these atrocities.
Offord said: “Today I ask the Prime Minister to authorise the release of all documents residing in the archives into those investigations, so we know what happened to thousands of people” on the island.
The MP then quoted the Holocaust survivor and writer Elie Wiesel who said “To forget the dead would be akin to killing them again.”
After expressing his wish that the suffering of those on Alderney is “never forgotten” the PM said: “I’m told  that the documents in question have been transferred to the National Archives.”
He said the “relevant minister” would also meet with Offord to discuss the matter further.
Accepted histories of Alderney hold that there were some 6,000 Jewish and Russian slave laborers on the island who were brought there to build massive fortifications.

Most of those sent to the camps were Russian, Polish, and Ukrainian prisoners of war and civilians.

There were also French Jews, along with German and Spanish political prisoners. They were held in at least two camps at Lager Sylt and Lager Norderney.

 

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