Moscow releases Wallenberg files

A Russian intelligence agency transfered secret files about Raoul Wallenberg to Russia’s chief rabbi.

The files, containing sensitive information about the life and death of the Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Jews during the Holocaust, will be housed in Moscow’s new Museum of Tolerance, scheduled to open in 2008.

Secret files containing sensitive information about life and death of Raul Wallenberg were transferred from Federal Security Service’s archives to Museum of Tolerance. The director of the Federal Security Service, Nikolai Patrushev, personally handed over the sixteen files to Rabbi Berl Lazar.

Wallenberg worked for the Swedish government in Hungary, and used his position to issue protective passes and establish safe houses for Jews fleeing the Nazis. He was arrested in Budapest in 1945 by Soviet secret service agents.

According to the Soviet Union’s official version, the Swede died of heart attack in July 1947 in his prison cell in Lubyanka Secret Service Headquarters. However, it is widely believed he was poisoned by his wardens after refusing to work as a Soviet agent.

Moscow officially declined to disclose any documents related to Wallenberg’s fate or even to recognize such files existed until September 1991, when a Soviet-Swedish joint investigative commission was founded.

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