A 91-year-old Holocaust survivor living in Israel has over the past few days testified against a former Nazi SS guard, who is suspected of being involved in the murder of thousands of Jews at the Stutthof Nazi concentration camp in Poland during the Second World War.
Abraham Korisky has flown to Germany to give his testimony against the 93-year-old Bruno Dey, who's charged as an accessory to the murder of at least 5,230 Jews from 1944 to 1945. He is standing trial at Hamburg's Juvenile Court due to being underage at the time the alleged atrocities were being committed.
Korisky's family accompanied him during the hearings.
His granddaughter, Dana Carmiel, posted a picture of herself and her grandfather on social media accompanied by a caption, saying, "My grandfather is a brave hero, that testified for two hours against a Nazi war criminal."
Korisky said to a judge during the hearing that he did not agree to testify out of revenge. "I don't care if he goes to prison or not," he said. "I'm here so these acts will be documented, written down in the history books for the future generations all over the world. Although I will never forgive and forget, my revenge is my family sitting beside me."
During his testimony, he told of the horrid abuse suffered by inmates in the camp. "We were beaten constantly, every hour, even when we were at work," said Korisky.
Korisky was brought to the camp in from Lithuania in 1944 when he was just 16 years old. In 1945, he survived the death marches when the camp was evacuated, eventually being rescued by the Soviet Army.
During the hearing, the 91-year-old talked about the year he spent at the camp, recalling the sadistic acts the guards forced the inmates do. In one instance, a child was forced to beat his own father to death in front of the other prisoners.
According to the indictment, as a concentration camp guard, Dey assisted in the murder of Jewish prisoners from August 9, 1944, to April 26, 1945.
One of Dey's duties at the camp was preventing escapes, revolts or prisoners being freed by any other means.
His trial began in 2018, some 74 years after the events. It is one of the last indictments to be filed against Nazi war criminals.
According to the German newspaper Die Welt, the 93-year-old admitted to investigators during his probe in 2018, that he saw people being taken to the gas chambers for extermination.
He told prosecutors he was considered unfit to fight on the frontline due to a heart problem, so instead was sent to Stutthof to work as a guard. He said that with or without him, the slaughters would have still taken place. “They would have just found someone else,” Dey said.
During his trial, Dey has refused to be held accountable for his actions during the war.
"Why do I have to be held accountable for this?", asked Dey.
"What could I have done? As an individual, you couldn't assist the people at the concentration camps. I'm sorry for those people, but I couldn't help," Dey said.
First published: 22:38 , 12.10.19