BONN (Sep. 4)
West Germany will seek the extradition of Aloes Brunner, a former top aide of Adolf Eichmann, now living in Damascus, to stand trial for sending thousands of Jews to Auschwitz and other death camps.
A Cologne court has issued a warrant for Brunner’s arrest and the Foreign Ministry will submit an extradition request to the Syrian authorities shortly, according to a report in Der Spiegel. Political observers here see little chance, however, that the Syrians will extradite Brunner, now 72, who is running an apparently successful business in Damascus.
German authorities initiated proceedings against Brunner 20 years ago but abandoned them for lack of evidence. The new warrant is believed to be based on fresh material and documents attesting to Brunner’s involvement in the persecution of Jews in Nazi-occupied France during World War II.
He was chief of the notorious Drancy internment camp near Paris from which many French Jews were deported to Auschwitz. He also directed a special commando unit assigned the mission of arresting Jews in the French town of Nizza and bringing them to Drancy. The bill of particulars drawn up by the Cologne court says that Brunner paid large sums to French Nazi collaborators for every Jew they arrested.
Brunner was close to Eichmann. The latter was said to have been his partner in the Damascus-based business known as the Khatar Office, while he lived in Argenting after the war. Brunner is said to be heavily involved in commerce in the Arab world.