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February 20, 2011

Porrajmos — the persecution of the Roma and Sinti by the Nazis

Filed under: Buchenwald, Dachau, Germany, World War II — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 12:01 pm

The Roma and Sinti have their own term for their genocide at the hands of the Nazis.  They call it the Baro Porrajmos which means the “Great Devouring.”  The total number of Roma and Sinti (Gypsies) who were murdered in the Nazi death camps is still unknown. The US Holocaust Memorial Museum estimates that 220,000 were killed, but other sources put the total deaths at 500,000 or more than half the total number of Gypsies in all the countries of Europe.

After World War II ended, Germany gave compensation to the Jewish survivors, but compensation claims by the Gypsies were denied by the Germans in the 1950s on the grounds that the Gypsies had been persecuted under the Nazi regime because they were “asocial” or had broken the laws of the country, not because of racism.  After a few years of protest by the Gypsies, compensation was finally given to the survivors.   (more…)