Head of the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors in Israel Noach Flug passed away on Thursday morning, at the Shaarei Tzedek Medical Center in Jerusalem. He was 85 years old.
Flug was born in Lodz, Poland in 1925. During the Second World War he joined the Lodz Ghetto resistance later he was imprisoned in the Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen and Mauthausen death camps. After the Holocaust he married Dorothy the couple had two daughters and four grandchildren.
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Following his aliyah Flug joined the public service where he worked for over 30 years. He was an economist with the Finance Ministry's budgets department, a financial advisor to the Knesset Finance Committee Israel's consul in Zurich and a financial advisor at the Israeli embassy in Bonn. Upon his retirement from the public service Flug began his activities as a Holocaust survivors' rights advocate.
His main battle was over individual compensation from Germany. Flug realized that in order to achieve his goals he would have to base his activities on a public-volunteer level and not on a national-State level; thus putting the claim against Germany over compensation for tens of thousands of dispossessed Holocaust survivors back on the agenda.
Flug in 2007: Reaching agreement with Ministry (Photo: Eli Mendelbaum)
Flug conceived the idea for joining together Holocaust survivors in Israel. He believed that the survivors should not resign themselves to a situation in which the German government does not pay monthly compensation to Holocaust survivors who weren't born in Germany.
Flug thought it fitting that Holocaust survivors represent their own interests directly and not through trustees speaking on their behalf. "Not in our name and not without us," he said in the past.
In 1994 he and his friends established the Foundation for the Benefit of Holocaust Victims, which provided Holocaust survivors with their basic everyday needs. In 2007 he led the Holocaust survivors' campaign which bore fruit – at the end of deliberations it was decided that each survivor would receive a monetary supplement of up to NIS 500.
"Noach dedicated his adult life, through to his dying day in the defense of the rights of Holocaust survivors," said Ze’ev Schwartz Vice President of the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors.
World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder called Flug a "towering figure in the struggle for the rights of Holocaust survivors."
"Noach Flug was an extraordinary figure. Despite the terrible suffering he endured during Holocaust, and the loss of most of his family,
Flug, who served as the president of the International Auschwitz Committee, vice president of the Claims Conference and a member of the Yad Vashem managing committee will be laid to rest at 6:30 pm in Kiryat Anavim.
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