Zagreb Prepares New Monument to Holocaust Victims

Zagreb City Assembly voted on Tuesday to build a monument honouring the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust in World War II - but the proposal has been questioned by Croatian Jewish community representatives and left-wingers.

The monument, by sculptor Dalibor Stosic and architect Kresimir Rogina, who won a public contest to design it, will be financed from the city budget and installed at Zagreb's main railway station.

Its concrete base will be embossed with a multitude of Stars of David, while the iron monument itself will look like a wall made of suitcases, intended to represent the luggage that victims took with them to Nazi concentration camps.

However some city assembly representatives argued that Zagreb should commemorate not only victims of the Third Reich, but also those killed under the rule of the Independent State of Croatia, NDH, a WWII fascist puppet state of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy.

"The Holocaust was the systematic persecution of the Jews committed by the Third Reich and its allies from 1933 to 1945, but today in Croatia we need to say clearly and loudly that the Ustasa regime was part of the same order," said Vesna Nadj from the Social Democratic Party.

Rada Boric from the leftist opposition bloc in the city assembly said that it does not support the proposed monument because "it is being said that the monument commemorates the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust and not Zagreb's or Croatia's Jews, and as well those [killed by the Ustasa] in camps: Serbs, Roma and all those who opposed the NDH".

Over 30,000 of around 40,000 Jews who were living on the NDH's territory during the war were killed.

At the Jasenovac camp, the Ustasa murdered 13,116 Jews, along with 47,627 Serbs, 16,173 Roma...

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