Swiss Diplomat Refuses to Appear As Defense Witness for Eichmann

A Swiss diplomat now serving in Austria, who managed to provide diplomatic protection for 50,000 Hungarian Jews marked by Adolf Eichmann for the gas chambers, refused today a defense counsel request to appear as a witness for the Nazi in his trial in Jerusalem.

The diplomat is Charles Lutz, now Swiss Consul General in Bregenz who served from 1939 to 1940 as Swiss Consul General in Jerusalem. When Eichmann came to Budapest in 1942, the Swiss official intervened for the 20,000 Jews, most of whom survived the Nazi holocaust and emigrated to other countries, including Israel.

The diplomat later was invited to visit Israel where a street in Haifa now bears his name. Hundreds of Hungarian Jews who survived the Nazi era because of the diplomat’s intervention lined the streets when he visited Israel.

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