Special Exhibition "Auschwitz Album"

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75 years ago, on January 27, 1945, the Red Army liberated Auschwitz and freed about 7.500 surviving inmates. The German National Socialists killed more than one million people there alone, mostly Jews. Throughout Europe they murdered about six million people of the Jewish faith. On this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day, people in many places commemorated the crimes of the National Socialists. Together with Yad Vashem, the world holocaust remembrance center, the embassy of Israel, the German embassy, the Seoul Metropolitan Government and the Goethe-Institute, the Remembrance Day was jointly organised. On January 29, the special exhibition "Auschwitz Album" was opened at the Seoul Museum of History to remember this cruelty.

The Auschwitz Album depicts the process of deportation, arrival, selection and death of Jews forcefully moved to Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp in late May 1944. As soon as a freight train carrying Jews arrived in Auschwitz, the Jews were divided into men, women, and children. Of the more than one million Jews, about ninety thousand were killed upon arrival, and the rest were held as forced labourers. All belongings brought by the Jews were confiscated by the Nazis and sent for use in Germany.

The album is the only surviving visual evidence of the process leading to the organised mass murder in Auschwitz-Birkenau. The photos were taken by two Nazis guards whose task was to take ID pictures and fingerprints of the inmates.

The album, which contains 56 pages and 193 photos, shows the entire process except the killing itself.

The exhibition will be open from 30 January to 22 March at the Seoul Museum of History. For more information, visit the Seoul Museum of History website (museum.seoul.go.kr)

The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom was honoured to partake in the opening ceremony and to remember the atrocities of the NS regime together with all attendees. Now more than ever, German political foundations must fight for freedom rights. As the German Ambassador to Korea said, it is our historical responsibility to protect freedom of speech and religion and to ensure that history never repeats itself.