Menu JTA Search

Germans Prevented Rescue of Jews from Bulgaria; King Insisted on Firm Anti-jewish Policy

Failure of the negotiations to secure the release of 4,000 Jewish children and 500 adults from Bulgaria two years ago resulted from pressure brought upon the Bulgarian Government by the German Minister in Sofia, it is revealed in the diary of Bogdan Filov, ex-premier and regent who was executed last week for treason.

An entry in Filov’s diary dated February 17, 1943 states: “Reminded King two days ago that Bekerle (the German envoy) told me that his government would not approve us allowing the emigration to Palestine of 4,000 Jewish children and 500 adult as agreed with the British Government through the Swiss legation. The German do not wish to interfere in our internal affairs, but would support a government able to liquidate the Communists and the Jews.”

Many other passages in the diary deal with Filov’s conferences with the King and members of the government on measures for further persecuting the Jews. One records his decision to utilize the assassination of General Lukoff, leader of the Bulgarian troops, by an unknown assailant for a drive on “the Jews and Communists.” Another, dated March 15, 1943, says, “Received by King for two hours. Discussed the Jewish question. King insists on firm behavior.”