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Paraguay Revokes Mengele’s Citizenship

August 14, 1979
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Josef Mengele, the long sought Nazi war criminal, known as the “Angel of Death,” has had his Paraguayan citizenship revoked by the Supreme Court of Paraguay, Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center here, reported.

Hier said he had been told by the Paraguayan ambassador to the United States that the Supreme Court acted on the revocation last Wednesday. Citizenship was granted Mengele in November, 1959. Mengele is believed responsible for the murders of hundreds of thousands of Jews and other inmates at Auschwitz. Hier said he was told that the revocation was based on Article 29 of the Paraguayan constitution which provides that a citizen who leaves Paraguay for more than two years without permission automatically forfeits his citizenship. Paraguayan officials claim Mengele left the country in 1960.

Hier said that, in a telephone conversation with Wiesenthal in Vienna, he had been told that United Nations Secretary General Kurt Waldheim had been informed by the UN envoy from Paraguay that the Paraguayan government plans to issue an arrest warrant for Mengele, whose present whereabouts are not known.

Hier said the development was a direct result of the international campaign against Mengele by the Wiesenthal Center and the U.S. Congress. He lauded the efforts of Sen. Jesse Helms (R. NC) and Rep. Mathew McHugh (D. NY) in the campaign. He said Waldheim deserved the thanks of all men of goodwill for his efforts.

While lauding the action of the Paraguayan government for facing its responsibility of not remaining indifferent to the presence of the “Angel of Death,” Hier reiterated that the Wiesenthal Center and Congress would closely monitor the actions of the Paraguayan government in fulfilling “its long overdue responsibilities” in the Mengele case.

Meanwhile, Wiesenthal announced in Vienna that his Jewish Documentation Center is offering an award of $50,000 for information leading to the capture of Mengele and an additional $10,000 for the welfare fund of the police department of the country where Mengele is arrested.

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