The Holocaust in Luxembourg refers to the persecution and near-annihilation of the 3,500-strong Jewish population of Luxembourg begun shortly after the start of the German occupation during World War II, when the country was officially incorporated into Nazi Germany. The persecution lasted until October 1941, when the Germans declared the territory to be free of Jews who had been deported to extermination camps and ghettos in Eastern Europe.
Before the war, Luxembourg had a population of about 3,500 Jews, many of them newly arrived in the country to escape persecution in Germany. The Nuremberg Laws, which had applied in Germany since 1935, were enforced in Luxembourg from September 1940 and Jews were encouraged to leave the country for Vichy France. Emigration was forbidden in October 1941, but not before nearly 2,500 had fled. In practice they were little better off in Vichy France, and many of those who left were later deported and killed. From September 1941, all Jews in Luxembourg were forced to wear the yellow Star of David badge to identify them.
From October 1941, Nazi authorities began to deport the around 800 remaining Jews from Luxembourg to Łódź Ghetto and the concentration camps at Theresienstadt and Auschwitz. Around 700 were deported from the Transit Camp at Fuenfbrunnen in Ulflingen in the north of Luxembourg.
Luxembourg was declared "Judenfrei" ("cleansed of Jews") except for those in hiding on 19 October 1941. Of the original Jewish population of Luxembourg, only 36 are known to have survived the war.
The involvement of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in World War II began with its invasion by German forces on 10 May 1940 and lasted beyond its liberation by Allied forces in late 1944 and early 1945.
Luxembourg was placed under occupation and was annexed into Germany in 1942. During the occupation, the German authorities orchestrated a programme of "Germanisation" of the country, suppressing non-German languages and customs and conscripting Luxembourgers into the Wehrmacht, which led to extensive resistance, culminating in a general strike in August 1942 against conscription. The Germanisation was facilitated by a collaborationist political group, the Volksdeutsche Bewegung, founded shortly after the occupation. Shortly before the surrender, the government had fled the country along with Grand Duchess Charlotte, eventually arriving in London, where a Government-in-exile was formed. Luxembourgish soldiers also fought in Allied units until liberation.Victor Bodson
Victor Bodson (24 March 1902 – 29 June 1984) was a Luxembourg socialist politician and lawyer. He is recognised as Righteous Among the Nations award by Yad Vashem for his actions during the Holocaust when he helping Jews from Germany escape persecution from the German government.
The Holocaust in Europe
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