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French Students Demand Trial for Papon

Demanding a speedy trial for possibly the last Frenchman accused of crimes against humanity during World War II, the Union of French Jewish Students demonstrated recently in front of the home of Maurice Papon.

Papon, 83, was secretary-general of the prefecture of Bordeaux under the collaborationist Vichy government until the liberation of the city in August 1944.

Although Bordeaux, which is in southwestern France, was at the time not occupied by Nazi troops, Papon was allegedly responsible for the deportation of 1,690 Jews from the region to Nazi death camps.

Papon, who was Paris police chief in the 1960s and a Cabinet member in the 1970s, has managed to evade trial with several legal maneuvers.

The student protesters staged a similar demonstration in front of Papon’s house a few months ago.

At the time, they underscored their demand that Papon be brought to trial by reading aloud the names of the Jews he allegedly arrested and deported.

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