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Publié le 4 Juin 2019

Rememberance of the Holocaust - Simon Rosenfeld, last known survivor of Sobibor died at 96

Semion Rosenfeld - the last known survivor of the uprising at the Nazi extermination camp at Sobibor - has died in Israel aged 96.

Published on June 4th, on BBC

Born in 1922 in the Ukrainian town of Ternovka, he joined the Red Army in 1940 to fight the Nazis, but became a prisoner of war in 1941. He was sent to a concentration camp in Minsk, and in 1943 was deported from there to Sobibor, a Nazi extermination camp built and operated by the SS during World War II in German-occupied in Poland.

Rosenfeld, who was born in Ukraine, passed away at a retirement home near Tel Aviv.

Rosenfeld was captured by the Germans while serving in the Soviet Army in 1941 and sent to the camp in Nazi-occupied Poland because he was Jewish.

In October 1943, he managed to escape together with some 300 prisoners.

A third of the escapees were caught almost immediately. Of the 200 who got out, only 47 survived World War Two.

More than 250,000 Jews are believed to have been killed at Sobibor in 1942-43.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paid tribute to Rosenfeld.

"He joined the Red Army, was captured by the Nazis but managed to escape from the death camp and continued to fight the Nazis", Mr Netanyahu wrote in a statement posted on Facebook. "May his memory be a blessing", he wrote.

Isaac Herzog, the head of Israel's Jewish Agency who had been providing support to Rosenfeld, said he was "very sad". He described Rosenfeld as a "true hero".

Unlike some facilities which also functioned as labour camps, Sobibor was among the Nazi camps built solely to exterminate Jews.

After the 1943 uprising, the Nazi guards shot dead all the remaining prisoners and destroyed the camp, before planting it over in an attempt to cover up their crimes.

Archaeologists later discovered the foundations of gas chambers and a train platform.

 

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