• Switzerland's news in English
 

Red Cross transfers war archive to Germans

Published: 29 Nov 2012 14:53 GMT+01:00

The massive International Tracing Service (ITS) archive created in 1943 to provide answers for millions of families seeking relatives lost during the war would as of January 1st be managed by Germany, the International Committee of the Red Cross said on Thursday.

The agency said it had decided to let go of the archive because the ITS mission had extended beyond purely humanitarian work.

The archives "reflect human beings and the unthinkable suffering of so many millions during the Second World War and beyond," ICRC chief Peter Maurer said.

The ITS archive houses over 50 million card files relating to more than 17.5 million civilians persecuted by the Nazis, ICRC said, pointing out that it covered civilians detained in Nazi concentration or labour camps and others forced to flee their homes because of the war.
   
Despite the handover of the archive, which has been in Red Cross hands for more than half a century, the organization said it would continue to support the database and its new administrator the German Federal Archive.

"The ICRC will continue to provide its technical expertise, helping the ITS serve the victims of Nazi persecution and their families," the agency said.
  
The Red Cross is handing over management of the ITS "but were not leaving it," Maurer said.

The Red Cross's central tracing agency in Geneva and other national Red Cross and Red Crescent societies around the world would provide back-up support to the German authorities, he said.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Greece crisis
Swiss franc strengthens on Greek 'no' vote
Yes (Oxi) supporters celebrate outcome of vote. Photo: Louisa Goulimaki/AFP

Swiss franc strengthens on Greek 'no' vote

The euro immediately weakened against the Swiss franc and the US dollar on Sunday night after Greek voters resoundingly rejected financial bailout proposals made by creditors. READ  

Blast kills one at Swiss-owned Montenegro plant

One person was killed and seven others injured in a blast on Sunday at a Swiss-owned weapons factory in Montenegro, police said. READ  

Ultralight plane pilot dies in Swiss mountain crash
Le Moléson looms over the castle in Gruyères. Photo: Switzerland Tourism

Ultralight plane pilot dies in Swiss mountain crash

A 62-year-old man died on Sunday after crashing an ultra-light motorized (ULM) plane into Le Moléson mountain in the canton of Fribourg, just four days after such aircraft were authorized for use in Switzerland, police said. READ  

Moroccan journalist on hunger strike in Geneva
Ali Lmrabet Moroccan journalist in Geneva. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

Moroccan journalist on hunger strike in Geneva

A Moroccan journalist on hunger strike in Geneva, who was previously jailed for insulting the Moroccan king and is now being denied a passport, was told Sunday to return home to plead his case. READ  

Greece crisis
Greece 'wants tax assets hidden in Swiss banks'
Photo: Leon Neal/AFP

Greece 'wants tax assets hidden in Swiss banks'

Athens wants a tax amnesty deal for Greeks who have stashed cash in Swiss banks, in a bid to bring much-needed revenue to the debt-laden country, a Swiss newspaper reported on Sunday. READ  

Wimbledon 2015
Federer through to the last 16 of Wimbledon
Federer on his way to victory over Groth. Photo: Tim Ireland/AFP

Federer through to the last 16 of Wimbledon

Seven-time champion Roger Federer defeated big-serving Australian Sam Groth to reach the Wimbledon last 16 on Saturday. READ  

Swiss cut bus and train fares as ozone spikes
Revellers throw water during a "giant water battle against the heatwave" in Lausanne. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

Swiss cut bus and train fares as ozone spikes

Regional authorities in Switzerland temporarily cut bus and train fares Saturday to encourage people to leave their cars at home, as a scorching heatwave sent ozone pollution levels soaring. READ  

Solar Impulse 2 reaches Hawaii to make history
Pilots Bertrand Piccard (L) and André Borschberg, celebrate after Borschberg landed at Kalaeloa Airport, Hawaii, on Friday. Photo: Eugene Tanner/AFP

Solar Impulse 2 reaches Hawaii to make history

Switzerland's Solar Impulse 2 aircraft completed a historic flight in its quest to circle the globe without consuming a drop of fuel, touching down gracefully in Hawaii on Friday after the most arduous leg of its journey. READ  

Wimbledon 2015
Verdasco victory sends Wawrinka to fourth round
Photo: Justin Tallis/AFP

Verdasco victory sends Wawrinka to fourth round

Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka reached the fourth round of the Wimbledon tennis tournament on Friday with a 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 win over Spain's Fernando Verdasco. READ  

Solar Impulse 2 nears Hawaii on historic flight
Borschberg in the cockpit of the solar plane. Photo: Solar Impulse

Solar Impulse 2 nears Hawaii on historic flight

After more than four and a half days of flying across the Pacific and setting a record for solo flight, Switzerland’s Solar Impulse 2 airplane was set to arrive in Hawaii on Friday on its epic journey around the world. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
National weather office extends danger alerts as heatwave takes hold
National
Most severe heatwave in Switzerland since 2003 on the way
Travel
Bogglingly expensive Geneva club sandwiches remain 'priciest in world'
Politics
Anti-immigration nationalist party remains most popular: poll
National
Greek finance minister slams Swiss over lack of tax evasion info
Business & Money
Insects proposed for sale in Swiss supermarkets next year
Sponsored Article
Geneva's revolutionary marketing education
National
'Oh God — I'm coming': noisy lovers' complaint goes public
National
Canton of Ticino threatens closing Italy border to asylum seekers
Sponsored Article
Swiss chocolate with a story: Blondel
National
Just in case: Swiss National Bank prepares for Grexit 'crisis'
National
Russian crisis fuelled by sanctions threaten 40,000 Swiss jobs: study
National
Art Basel: Art for art's sake — or to make an investment?
National
New survey ranks Zurich Europe's priciest city for expatriates
National
Quarter of residents in Switzerland 'have multiple homes'
Features
Veggie lovers and 'flexitarians' challenge Swiss meat-eating habits
National
Forest officials struggle to save Switzerland's dying ash trees
Education
Historian finds ancient Egyptian papyrus texts in Basel uni library
National
Seven large Swiss employers back 'flexible work' charter
National
Basel police rescue of ducks forces closure of A2 motorway
National
Mother and daughter die as rain storms lash central Switzerland
Sport
'Stan the man' Wawrinka: French Open triumph 'completely crazy'
Culture
Expat's Zurich 'then and now' video shows how little the city has changed
National
Phoney Geneva police officers rob tourists and UN staff
Sport
Blatter's abrupt resignation seen as a 'stunning capitulation'
Features
Cleanup crews head to ski resorts to keep Swiss mountains tidy
Culture
Interlaken museum showcases works by Picasso using Caran d'Ache pencils
National
Low interest rates give tenants right to seek rent reductions in Switzerland
Sport
Switzerland's Blatter fends off critics to win fifth term as Fifa president
National
Agricultural researchers discover why Swiss cheese has holes
Culture
Swiss filmmaker returns home to shoot 'gender-fluid' film in Ticino
Features
Severed rope recalls Matterhorn's first ascent 150 years ago
National
Top Swiss court refuses to recognize child's two gay 'fathers'
National
Woman's scoop for Ticino online news site: 'I killed my husband'
National
Four Swiss bathing areas 'unfit' for swimmers: Euro environmental body
Technology
Scientists from Zurich university find craters beneath Lake Neuchâtel
National
Prince William in Switzerland backs fight to protect endangered species
National
Swiss Federal Railways rely on sheep to 'mow' grass alongside tracks
Sport
Switzerland to host 2020 international ice hockey tourney
Business & Money
I never learned German: departing Credit Suisse CEO's regret
Sport
International tennis museum in US showcases Federer hologram
National
Inequality greater than most Swiss think: opinion poll for unions
National
Shooting in Switzerland leaves five dead in domestic drama near Zurich
National
Swiss Federal Railways tackle taboo subject of suicide in bid to cut deaths
National
German expats in Switzerland face discrimination: report
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

4,361
jobs available