facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Austria mass grave may hold Nazi victims

Jan. 5, 2011 at 3:32 PM   |   Comments

VIENNA, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- Austrian authorities say they will dig up a newly found mass grave thought to hold victims of the Nazi "euthanasia" program.

Construction workers preparing a site for a new building at a psychiatric hospital in Hall, near Innsbruck, uncovered 220 decomposed bodies.

"We cannot assume that all bodies are euthanasia victims, but there was a marked increase in death in the hospital in the last years of the war," Dr. Christian Haring, hospital director, told The Irish Times. Forensic experts will exhume the bodies for identification, which could take two years.

In the euthanasia program, begun in 1939, 70,000 to 200,000 people deemed "unworthy of life" -- mostly mentally and physically disabled men, women and children -- were killed with drugs or gas. It was halted in 1941 after an outcry led by church leaders, but continued quietly until the end of the war.

The bodies discovered in Hall are believed to come from the latter period.

"It's possible that the graveyard was created in October 1942 as there were plans at this time to create a euthanasia facility in Hall," said Haring.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Great white shark circling surfers photographed by drone Great white shark circling surfers photographed by drone
2
Poland buys medium-range missiles from U.S. Poland buys medium-range missiles from U.S.
3
Louisiana judge rules state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional Louisiana judge rules state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional
4
Watch: News anchor resigns live on-air to sell pot, '[Expletive] it, I quit' Watch: News anchor resigns live on-air to sell pot, '[Expletive] it, I quit'
5
Arrest warrant issued for 'person of interest' in missing UVA student case Arrest warrant issued for 'person of interest' in missing UVA student case
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback