Dutch Jews slam sale of debris from Nazi camps

THE HAGUE (JTA) — The Dutch Central Jewish Board condemned two recent incidents involving the sale by museums of debris from Nazi concentration camps.  

On Sunday, the board issued a statement slamming the sale of debris from Camp Vught, which was a transit camp for Jews located in the southern Netherlands.

“It is wholly inappropriate to abuse signs of horror and inhumanity for commercial purposes,” the board said in a statement. 

Camp Vught, a national memorial monument and museum, reportedly offered visitors the chance to buy wooden figures prepared from wood recovered from the camp’s barrack 1B. Omroep Brabant, a local television station, reported the figures were sold by volunteers “in order to raise funds to help promote the preservation” of Camp Vught. 

Established in late 1942, the camp held 8,684 Jews and also some non-Jewish prisoners, according to Yad Vashem. The Jews were deported from Vught to Westerbork and then to Auschwitz, where they were killed.

Earlier this month, the CJO spoke out against the sale of barbed wire from Camp Amersfoort, another national memorial monument and museum established on what used to be the premises of a Nazi concentration camp.

The management of Camp Amersfoort decided to give away the wire after being criticized for selling it for $12 a piece in its gift shop earlier this month, according to a report by RTV Utrecht, a local television channel. The camp held Dutch resistance fighters and Jewish forced labor prisoners, most of whom did not survive the Holocaust.

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