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Switzerland

  • Behind the Headlines: Survivors Recall Swiss Policy of Using Jews for Slave Labor

    Some of Switzerland’s most famous ski resorts were the sites of forced labor camps for Jewish refugees during World War II. This latest revelation — unveiled in a British television documentary this week — is likely to further tarnish the pristine reputation of neutrality that the Swiss had nurtured over the past half-century. Switzerland has… More ▸

  • Swiss President’s Interview Provokes New Controversy

    The year has begun with a new controversy involving Switzerland’s president, Swiss Jewish leaders and the World Jewish Congress. The conflict was sparked by an interview incoming president Flavio Cotti gave to the Swiss newspaper Tribune de Geneve that was published on the eve of his Jan. 1 inauguration. Cotti said critics of Switzerland’s wartime… More ▸

  • Hungarian Survivors to Receive Next Round of Swiss Payments

    Some 20,000 Hungarian Holocaust survivors will soon receive checks from a Swiss fund for needy survivors. The checks, which come in the wake of a similar payment last month to Latvian survivors, will total $400 each, according to officials involved with the payments. The payments will be distributed in January, they said. The Holocaust Memorial… More ▸

  • Pressure Mounts on Swiss to Reach Global Settlement

    Pressure is mounting against Swiss banks to reach a global settlement of all claims related to Switzerland’s wartime financial dealings. Until this week, Jewish groups were the primary players calling on the banks to reach a final settlement to resolve all Holocaust-era claims. Such a settlement could involve a reported $2 billion to $3 billion…. More ▸

  • Behind the Headlines: Jewish Officials Press Swiss on Comprehensive Settlement

    A decision to postpone American sanctions on Swiss banks has one clear goal. The delay until March 31 will give Jewish officials a chance to negotiate a final settlement of all Holocaust-era claims against the banks, according to an official involved in the negotiations. The so-called global settlement could involve a payment of billions of… More ▸

  • Israeli Envoy Visits Swiss Village That Gave Sanctuary from Nazis

    For many, Switzerland’s behavior during the war has become synonymous with laundering Nazi gold and hoarding dormant bank accounts. But wartime Switzerland means something different to Israel’s new ambassador to the Alpine nation. Yitzhak Mayer was a 9-year-old fugitive from occupied France when he arrived in the Swiss town of Eglisau with his mother and… More ▸

  • Probe of Swiss Banks Dealings with Nazis Reveals Deeper Ties

    Swiss commercial banks bought three times more gold from Nazi Germany than previously thought, according to a commission appointed by the Swiss government. The commission’s announcement that private Swiss banks purchased more than $61 million in gold looted by the Nazis could open the door to demands that the banks give up the the gold,… More ▸

  • Lenin Appears on Swiss Bank List

    It’s recorded in the history books as one of those fateful moments — in the spring of 1917 Lenin traveled by train from Zurich to Russia, where he would soon lead the Bolshevik Revolution. Now it appears that he may have left something behind. The most recent list of holders of dormant Swiss bank accounts… More ▸

  • Swiss Banks Set to Begin Payout of Dormant Accounts This Month

    Swiss banks are planning to start paying out some dormant accounts belonging to Holocaust victims by the end of November. The announcement this week by a Swiss official comes just weeks ahead of a conference that will examine the ways American public institutions should deal with Swiss banks. “I’m quite optimistic” accounts will soon be… More ▸

  • Swiss Holocaust Fund Checks Delivered to Latvian Survivors

    Some of the recipients were less than enthusiastic. “The sum is insulting,” said 75-year-old Yevgenia Barowska. “It should be a monthly pension.” Barowska was among the 82 Latvian Holocaust survivors who received the first checks from a Swiss fund for needy survivors. While she criticized the checks for $400 distributed at a ceremony Tuesday in… More ▸