WWII transit camp for Jews nominated for European heritage list

The Westerbork transit camp, where Jews were moved to prior to their deportation to Nazi death camps during World War II, should be included in the European heritage list, the cabinet has decided.

Westerbork, which was largely demolished in the 1970s, now houses a museum and momuments of remembrance for the over 107,000 people who passed through its gates.

The cabinet is also recommending the Peace Palace in The Hague for inclusion on the European heritage list. It now houses the International Court of Justice and several other institutions.


The Dutch arts and culture council had earlier recommended both locations be included, because of the way they represent recent European history.

‘The Peace Palace emerged to prevent the sort of war which Westerbork was such a painful witness to,’ the council said at the time.

The European Commission will decide on whether or not to include both buildings at the beginning of next year. The European Heritage Label focuses on ‘sites that celebrate and symbolise European integration, ideals and history’.

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