A resolution urging nations to open Holocaust archives in Bad Arolsen, Germany, was referred to the U.S. House of Representatives. The House Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday sent the draft to the full House for consideration following its April recess.The legislation, authored by Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.), chairman of the U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, urges all European nations to allow open access to the archives, which contain some 50 million records regarding the fate of some 17 million victims of the Nazis.In order to allow for open access, each member of the International Commission of the International Tracing Service – the United States, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland and the United Kingdom – must ratify the May 2006 amendments to the 1955 Bonn Accords. Only the United States, Israel, Poland, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom have done so. “It is beyond shameful that 62 years after the Holocaust ended, the Holocaust archives located in Bad Arolsen remain closed,” Hastings said in a statement. “It is imperative that we open these archives to Holocaust researchers now, while survivors still remain among us, so researchers can benefit from the insights of eyewitnesses.”
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